The New Independent Baptists

I’m optimistic about the future of the Independent Baptist movement! I’m excited when I meet the next generation of men who are currently inheriting pulpits from their accomplished predecessors. I thrill at every young[1] church planter who shares amazing stories of God’s grace in their local ministry. Young evangelists who refuse to engage in denominational politics inspire me. I’m encouraged by young missionaries who are decidedly not ethnocentric preferring rather to contextualize the gospel ministry as taught by the Apostle Paul.[2]

These are the new independent Baptists. And they are…

1 – Obsessed with the Gospel

Romans 1:16 I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth.

People do not change because they start coming to our church! People change because they have a supernatural interaction with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This is the power that transforms a person’s destiny from Hell to Heaven. This is the power that brings life to the dead spirit. This is the power that slowly conforms an individual into the image of Christ. It is the preaching of the Gospel that brings true change. This is why we bristle at preaching that minimizes God’s work and maximizes man’s effort. We understand that true change will only come to an individual’s life as they “grow in grace and in deeper understanding of Jesus”[3] not when they are subjected to an artificial list of holiness based on personal preferences.

2 – Committed to Preaching the Bible

II Timothy 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

We love expository preaching. We desire to expose what the Bible is actually saying! We loathe the practice of twisting a scripture to fit a preconceived idea. Some of us expose the scripture through sequentially preaching through entire books of the Bible, taking great care to understand each passage within its proper context. Others prefer a systematic approach that allows for sermon series that comprehensively deals with a specific topic or doctrine. In both cases the new independent Baptist takes great interest in being true to the original intent of the author. This is why we dismiss preachers who continually misappropriate the very Word of God. At best these men are naïve, at worst they are knowingly prostituting the Word for personal profit.

3 – Men of Unity who Despise Hyper-Separatism

John 13:35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

Sadly our movement has been identified by a misappropriation of one passage[4]about separation while ignoring so many others about unity.[5] These are the hyper-separatists. Not only do they separate from godly leaders outside of our denomination they actively attack fellow independents. This has led our movement to divide into splinter camps of varying influence and size. Each group seems to demand complete adherence to not only fundamentals of theology but also to complete agreement in secondary doctrinal issues. But they go even further. They also want uniformity in personal convictions and preferential issues like worship style, service scheduling, building design, and pulpit attire. To question the status quo brings suspicion. To express disagreement brings swift separation.

However, this is changing![6] The new Independent Baptist is less enamored with uniformity and more dedicated to unity. The litmus test for fellowship has nothing to do with jeans vs. ties, hymns vs. CCM, or Sunday school vs. small groups. We understand that the world is going to hell, and if we are going to reach them it is going to take a wide range of doctrinally sound churches that are going to look extremely different from one another. This is not only acceptable it is preferable.

4 – Turned Off by Denominational Politics

I Corinthians 1:12-13 …there are contentions among you. Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ. Is Christ divided?

One of the great benefits of being Independent Baptist was supposed to be the lack of denominational control. Sadly, our movement has not always been able to live up to this ideal. This is partly due to our proclivity toward the inane practice of 2nd degree, 3rd degree, and 4th degree separation.[7]

Fear is a terrible thing. Fear will lead a man to say what he doesn’t believe in order to please a critic. Fear will cause a man to sacrifice transparency at the altar of influence. Fear will keep a man quiet when he ought to speak but he will call it discretion. Fear will keep a church planter tied to a denominationally approved method though it produces few results. Instead, we choose to be men who are more concerned with freedom of expression and open dialogue than retaining influence and pleasing critics.

Trust me. I understand the pressure. Simply by writing this post I am opening myself up to reprisals. But I have found that speaking the truth is rewarding, expressing your position is freeing, and saying what you really think is tremendously liberating. Transparency doesn’t seem to limit influence it seems to expand it.

5 – Dedicated to Fiscal Accountability

II Timothy 4:5 Make full proof of thy ministry.

At the recent Idea Day East there were many great truths shared about life and ministry. One of the greatest quotes of the day was, “if the pastoral staff is afraid of financial accountability – there is a problem.” Far too many churches have been destroyed by a pastoral staff unwilling to adopt strict financial policies. Overspending, misappropriation of funds, and even outright theft have brought many churches down. I find great comfort in knowing that this trend is dying away in Independent Baptist churches due to the humility of pastors and the hard work of deacons. If we are to lead in the coming century then we ought remove the temptation of financial corruption.

6 – Well Read

II Timothy 4:5 Make full proof of thy ministry.

No pride should be taken in ignorance. We should primarily be well read in the Scriptures for they contain what is needed for a life and ministry. But we should also be well read in history, science, literature, leadership, and pop culture. One of the things I love about the young Independent Baptists in whom God is bringing me in contact is their readiness to grow. They are not in bondage to an “Index Liborum Prohibitorum” as was instituted by the Roman Catholic Church. They read broadly always being careful to filter new thoughts through the inspired Word. This allows them to reach a broader swath of people within their cultural setting. It also allows them to challenge their presupposed points-of-view.

7 – Just Getting Started

Acts 1:8 Ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

Our generation is just getting started! The world stands before us in desperate need of Jesus Christ. We hold the solution to the world’s problems and we are ready to give Him away. We are willing to do anything it takes to please our Lord and advance His Kingdom. We are just now arriving on the foreign field! We are just now launching our church plant! We are just now inheriting the established pulpit! We are just now beginning to see the possibilities for world-wide evangelism! The future is bright. The next 40 years belong to us! Will we be the generation that turns the nations back to Christ? I believe we can – for we are just getting started!

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I would love to hear your thoughts! Comment below:


[1] Though I use the word “young” I have found some of these new independent Baptists are in their 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s.

[2] 1 Corinthians 9:19-27

[3] 2 Peter 3:18

[4] 2 Corinthians 6:14-17

[5] Ephesians 4:1-6, Philippians 2:1-3, 1 Corinthians 1:10-12, The entire book of 1 John

[6] Be patient! I’ve noticed that the new Independent Baptist can be extremely impatient. Here I will point to myself, for I am among the worst. I falsely assume that my journey has been everyone’s journey. I assume that my conclusions will be everyone’s conclusions. I grow impatient with those who disagree and tend to write off those who differ in opinion. I forget that it has taken me over a decade in the ministry to arrive at certain conclusions. I forget that I have only learned these things by God’s grace and in His perfect timing. I forget that I have not yet arrived but have been called to keep learning and growing. For me to grow impatient with someone who has not yet arrived at my conclusions (or never will) is the height of hypocrisy.

[7] I will be discussing this odd practice in an upcoming post called: The Six Degrees of Separation.

  1. Eric Tastet says:

    Very great article, my friend. I look forward to our future. It was a lonely journey for my wife and I at first, but are grateful the Lord allowed us to cross paths with you and your wife. Thanks for your enthusiastic passion toward this topic!

    • Josh Teis says:

      Reno is in a far better place because God sent you both to that needy city!

    • 11 years there. Hmmm. 22 years ago when I was on my 11th anniversary I was still reading the books of older wiser men. In fact I’m still reading the books of older wiser men. I don’t know much but It’s worked for 33 years, guess I’ll keep it up. But God bless you, you’ve made it past the decade mark. That’s good. Keep loving the Lord & your wife. Regarding the old independent Baptists though, The 37 young people in Bible college right now from our youth department sure enjoy their old fashioned pastor. The 150 teens who were here Sunday still let me run their camps, preach on soul winning, separation, Bible memory. We all kind of like what’s going on with the old independent Baptist. But that’s what independent is, we all get to chose. but as the old saying goes, if it ain’t broke… For these 33 years it’s worked pretty good.

      • Josh Teis says:

        Thank you Bruce for your perspective. God bless you as you continue to reach people with the good news of Jesus.

        • Anonymous says:

          You are so kind in your response Josh. The ignorance in that previous comment is staggering. If you think the trail of bodies left by IFB, including in Goddard’s church, is proof that what you’re doing is working then there’s no help for you. Thank you for writing this and I truly hope to see more pastors and churches embodying these ideals.

          • Anonymous says:

            Jeremiah 6:16 says Thus saith the Lord, stand ye in the ways and see, and ask for the OLD PATHS, where is the GOOD WAY, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. Esther said if I perish I perish she had to do what needed to be done and did not change. Old Elijah would not doubt his need a Baal and refused to change just the fact that this whole idea of new independent Baptist makes a mockery with all the comments shows the direction it’s heading good luck to your endeavor a great man once said when we all get to heaven we will all wish we did more the way that we were supposed to.

      • Joshua Agan says:

        Pastor Goddard,
        Josh Teis isn’t saying that we should reject the older, wiser men of faith in favor of pop culture Christianity like your comment implies. I happen to have spent some time in Josh’s office in Las Vegas and noted the books in his library (for they can tell me much about the man behind the desk) and he has not done what you seem to imply.

        Josh is well read. He strongly believes in soul winning. He believes in separation. He practices Bible memory. But what Josh very accurately (and politely) pointed out is that many in the older traditions of IFB have made personal standards almost a god, their own modes of separation a point of prideful arrogance, and God help the Baptist preacher who happens to associate with a non-Baptist!

        In many ways, you’re right: don’t fix what ain’t broke. But if standards are a person’s measure of holiness, then he has it backwards. Personal standards have never produced holiness; that is purely pharisaical! Rather, true personal holiness will result in certain personal standards. However, we cannot force holiness on other people through corporate policy as many IFB churches have tried to do. That only breeds pride, arrogance, and contention, which is what many of the staunch IFB churches have become noted for. “Because our standards are stricter than your standards, we are better/holier than you.” The arrogance betrays them.

        Similarly, separation is a commandment of Scripture which Josh does not discard. But he rightly recognizes that many have made personal standards their litmus test for fellowship. We are to separate over key doctrinal differences, not over facial hair, drums, fashion choices, or use of screens.

        Do not be so quick to judge Josh as having discarded the older, wiser men of faith. What he says in this article is spot-on, and a breath of fresh air in a very stale IFB atmosphere.

        • AnOldIFBLaymen says:

          What left so many people in the IFB wake is rebellion. Obedience IS better than sacrifice. I’ve seen revival in an age when a woman would be asked not to wear pants to church. I’ve not seen true Holy Ghost revival in my 40 years of churches where standards are a cursory mention. Do you think we’re holier today because we allow “facial hair, drums, fashion choices, or use of screens?” The only castigation a rebellious people wield when confronting standards they don’t want to yield to is “pharisaical standards.” And they have the audacity to incriminate the faithful pastors and remove any culpability from immature or rebellious church goers. God’s indictment on the Israelites of the Old Testament was for being stiff-necked. Young man, you’ve evaluated the failings of our denomination incorrectly. The air is “stale” from the corruption introduced by the world. You should be careful what air you think is refreshing.

          • Michael Depasse says:

            Excuse me I am not trying to be rude but you sir seem to be stiff necked. You argue that the old ways are the only ways when the question is really not in the procedure but in the message. Why do we feel the need to attack each other when the message is to show the love of Christ and lead people to the cross. I have been to churches where names are called and hate is spewed from the pulpit. What does this all accomplish? Christ should be the message and not what we are wearing. The focus is not on us but on Him. The attitude you display is the one that is pushing people away from God not to Him.

          • Max Molyneux says:

            While I support churches establishing whatever standards they deem appropriate, lots of energy can be spent fighting straw men. One example recently mentioned is the prohibition of facial hair on men. This apparently goes back to the 60s, when facial hair and blue jeans were sometimes associated with a rebellion against conservative values. I never even met anyone that expressed these ideas until I became an IFB in 1980, and I know of few among IFBs who hold these opinions today. Dancing and movies were preached against in 1980. I met just one for whom dancing was a temptation to vice. It seemed curious that the IFB kids couldn’t partake in square dance instruction in physical education classes; and, even though I never found square dancing to be sensual, I respected their position. Probably because most IFBs have TVs in their homes and internet access, movies are not much of a target, and deregulation has created such a plethora of shows that naming a specific target familiar to a pleurality has become nearly impossible. Fascination with sports, a chief IFB graven image, I’ve never heard condemned–though these events generate billions for the liquor industry, and few famous athletes are moral exemplars. As for drums in the church, I don’t believe the Bible alludes to certain instruments being sanctified. My father played the bass drum in the Salvation Army, but that was mainly to help keep time; I don’t think he ever knew what a sycopated rhythm was. Many of these “ancient landmarks” aren’t all that ancient. The altar call was a device of the 1800s, no better than prior catechisms and probably poorer at teaching doctrine, the core of the Great Commission. One area of healthcare that is often attacked is mental health. While there are plenty of frauds in any profession, advances in psychiatry now offer numerous treatments which never existed prior to the past few decades; and it is sad to see such a broad brush used to paint professionals dedicated to making functional citizens out of the victims of mental illness.

      • Baptist Pastor says:

        Bruce, your post proves the point of this article so well. The “37 Bible College Students” love their pastor. Nothing about loving Jesus. Sarcasm so perfectly placed. The camp is about you and your leadership. You also are clearly the judge of results since you perceive you are very successful and have it right. Joel Osteen does to!

        • bdub says:

          RE Baptist Pastor,

          So true. I posted a not so nice feedback way way below.

          I went and watched a few of Bruce’s videos yesterday to find out who he is…. while the Jury is still out… I so wanted to come here and comment… so….

          I’d like to ask Bruce what the 1 or 2… TOP problems within say 50% of the IFB’s across this nation that needs to change. If you can’t think of any… go to what ever % you want to 25%, 15%, 5%?? and state the problem. This is a serious question to you Bruce. I want to know.

        • Bdub says:

          Bruce is about 50% in delivering the same message my pastor does. Another issue with IFB pastors. They like to hear themselves talk and don’t care howuch of your time you waste. hour and 15 minute messages? Come on. With no more content than could be delivered in 35 minutes. You may have pastored for 33 years but you need to join toastmasters and figure out how to get to the point.

        • Anonymous says:

          What do you do with the Apostle Paul telling folks to follow him as he follows Christ?

        • Chris Brown says:

          Excellent point regarding results! We r not wise enough to truly judge them. There r faithful God-fearing saints serving with meager results in the shadows of mega-ministries that glorify our Lord in a way that only they can. If u will, they were created to scratch a particular itch of our Sovereign that we will never comprehend. And they are no less successful than Spurgeon.

        • Patrick Holt says:

          Are you saying those students don’t love Jesus????? That is YOUR Insinuation!!!!!!!

        • Anonymous says:

          I follow Christ not Pastor Goddard. I am one of his 37 students from his church in Bible college. You dont know anything about me. Now he is a leader of mine but not my God. I just happen to get behind the men who have been living according to GOD’S WORD for a long time. Is Pastor Goddard perfect? Absolutely NOT but he has been my Pastor faithfully for longer than you’ve been in ministry. Watch your comment please

      • Anonymous says:


      • Keaston Edwards says:

        Amen. I agree with you Pastor Goddard. I am 32 years old. I do not know understand this new stuff. I am an Independent, Fundamental, Baptist and proud to be. I am not slamming anyone who is not. I believe in the old paths today. By the way, you are one of my heroes of the faith.


        WOW. This is why people leave the ministry. If you can’t praise God for someone being in full time ministry for eleven years because it doesn’t match up to your 33 years then check your pride.

        JESUS was only in ministry for three and a half years. I guess he should have been reading the books of the “older wiser men” of His time huh?

        If this is your attitude then PLEASE retire. Try encouraging instead of tearing down. Not once did this man say he was changing the Word of God, or reaching the lost with the gospel.

        The PRIDE of “I do it this way” in this post is evident.


        Mr. Goddard,
        WOW. This is why people leave the ministry. If you can’t praise God for someone being in full time ministry for eleven years because it doesn’t match up to your 33 years then check your pride.

        JESUS was only in ministry for three and a half years. I guess he should have been reading the books of the “older wiser men” of His time huh?

        If this is your attitude then PLEASE retire. Try encouraging instead of tearing down. Not once did this man say he was changing the Word of God, or reaching the lost with the gospel.

        The PRIDE of “I do it this way” in this post is evident.

      • Maria Teresita E. says:

        In the early 2000’s, Bruce Goddard’s church was the place to go and raise your family. The church ran double services on Sunday mornings. The Christian school had almost 200 students. That’s why he was able to send so many to Bible college.

        Today, half of the congregation and school are gone. Behind the building that houses the auditorium is a cement foundation; the result of 16 years of building fundraising. The newer, bigger auditorium never materialized. It is a sad testament to what the church once was and somehow lost.

        This was my family’s church for over two decades. And today, it is being eaten up by child sex abuse scandals and allegations of cover-ups.

        My family’s biggest regret about this church? That we didn’t leave sooner.

      • Very grateful says:

        Pastor Goddard. You are right on. Keep up the good work. I have never met a man so close to God. Faith Baptist is an awesome church with awesome members

    • Geoff says:

      Pastor Ties-

      Great ideas and points. Agree with all of them. One minute concern, using the term “New” independent fundamental Baptist; and it appears that it’s just another splinter group to distinguish your current thoughts and ideas on how to run a Church versus the older Independent Baptist views and methods. Humbly suggest you just go about your ideas without having to call it something like “New” Independent Baptist.
      I’m sure you are; and this article, and the use of the term, is just to state that you are trying approaches not typically associated with Independent Baptist Churches. Regardless of the distinctions between your methods and, say the “older” methods, it’s nice to know that God works through flawed people, despite their petty disagreements, and God will always have a remnant. Great to see how the Lord grew and is growing your Church. I often think about our Church, and the way we do things, and why, and say if we modified, tweaked, or did whatever, could God use these minor adjustments to allow us to share the Gospel with greater efficacy (not that it relies on our ability in anyway). God gave us a brain, and intended us to use it. Glad you are trying new things!

    • Kurt Danirl says:

      One main thing to remember and to notice is the the Church of Jesus Christ began on the day of Pentecost,that was established by the declaration of the word of God by the Aposte Peter,as he had received it at the hand of Jesus,the son of God himself..The self explanatory question arrises-why is the first sermon that was ever preached,ignored?it is totally ignored by the masses of denominationalism and most non denominations. . The great commission was revealed in Acts chapter2:38/ which only contains ,the only name given under heaven amoungst men whereby we must be saved,and he’s coming back after a people that’s called dy his name; and the only way the bride of Christ can take on the name of the bridegroom( which is JESUS) is through water baptismal according to Acts2:38,as the first church did. . . Have we become wiser than God to ignore the messageiof Peter?Evidently some think so,and have lost the fear of God that they never possessed,and ignorantly and blindly have adapted to themselves the doctrine of the Catholic church which created the ,father, son ,and holy ghost teaching,325 AD. ( NICEAN COUNCIL)after the first church ,and removed the name of Jesus Christ. . The original church only baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for over 300 years until man changed to it,putting themselves in a precarious way before God. . The bible teaches us to earnestly contend for the faith once delivered to the Saints / Jude 3. . May I ask you? What are you contending for

      • Eric Tastet says:

        Hi Kurt! Just a quick response to you. You are correct to state the start date of the 1st century church beginning in that upper room where the 120 were assembled. As Peter preached the first Christian sermon, the Holy Ghost came through and a great miracle took place as was prophesied in the book of Joel (2:28-32). The only rebuttal I have to you is your comment about baptism being the only way one can become part of the bride. As you reference v. 38 of Acts 2, I believe you misinterpret it. When Scripture tells us “…for the remission of sins”, it is not implying “in order to have remission of sins”, it is saying “because of the remission of sins.” I’ll illustrate it this way. If you see a sign that says someone is “wanted FOR murder”, it is saying that that person is wanted BECAUSE he/she has murdered, that person is not wanted in order for them to murder. This is the same context of Scripture, we are baptized because of the remission of our sins – not in order to have it. We baptized to identify with Christ (Romans 6:1) not a church or doctrine.

      • Patrick Holt says:

        Maybe we might be following what JESUS said in Matthew 28:19. What did Jesus say?

  2. I just wanted to leave a comment to say that this is one of the most refreshing posts I have read in a long time. I never comment on blogs, but I could not let this one go. I appreciate the honesty and sincerity in this post. I have been in ministry for over a decade now and I have see and experienced some of the things talked about in this post, and I am so glad their are men and churches who are coming together to focus on reaching people for Christ and fighting the real enemy – Satan. The point I loved the most was the last one, when he says we are just getting started! I feel that is so true. There are so many leaders rising up to help lead the next generation! I’m glad to be a part of the New Independent Baptists.

  3. Randy Justus says:

    Josh, one of the comments I made to my own church family upon my return from Idea Day East, was how encouraged I was at seeing the next generation of Independent Baptist pastors & leaders, with their commitment to sound doctrine and their passion for the Gospel ministry. Your post captures that wonderfully. At 51, the stats tell me I am in the prime decade for my most fruitful ministry for Christ. I prefer to see it am my strongest yet, by the grace of God. What a blessing, then, to honor those who have gone before and are finishing their course so well, and encourage those who are beginning with such a passion and longing to serve our Savior. God bless you brother!

  4. Mark Gaston says:

    Very good article! I find this very encouraging…

  5. Jeff Gilpin says:

    Great blog post! Love to hear your heart and passion for your calling, and the future of the Church.

  6. Marc Patton says:

    Loved the article. We are missionaries serving in Hungary for over 22 years. The Lord has taught us much over these years, and it is a joy to see many young independent Baptist pastors and missionaries taking the path you describe. May the Lord give us the courage and humility to continue down this path.

    • Craig Siefert says:

      Marc, it is awesome to know that you are still in Hungary after more that 22 years! Jackie and I are still in Lewisville, TX at Temple Baptist Church (Pastored by Richard Wallace Sr).

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thanks Mark! I’m honored to hear from a veteran missionary like you! God bless you man.

  7. Nick Reed says:

    Glad you wrote this! I was not raised IFB and many of the things I have seen and experienced since getting to know it have been very much a turn off! Glad their is a new group coming up that isn’t controlled by the non biblical opinions and politics of the IFB.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thankful that you are helping to lead us!

    • Anonymous says:

      Interesting, it seems many of you identify more with the Southern Baptist ideology….if you have been turned off by IFB in the past, why would you choose to pastor one instead of a Southern Baptist Church?

  8. Brian Norris says:

    Thoughtful. Praying. May it prove true.

  9. bdub says:

    Fear. My wife and I were the only ones who would speak up to her father, at the time our pastor, when he was out of God’s will (putting it nicely). The rest of the church was either too fearful or too apathetic to speak up (my opinion). Today he’s dead, and the rest are floundering fools still thumping out more ignorance every service. And yet the current pastor refuses to acknowledge or address what happened in the past, which is keeping him from moving forward. He’s too fearful of losing a couple members if he spoke the truth and set the record straight. At this point a couple members is half the church, so maybe he is right in being fearful?? (all my opinion)

    …”speaking the truth is rewarding”… careful. When I speak the truth, I get called a liar and jealous by the aggressors in a feeble attempt to keep me quiet.

    There needs to be a “New” Independent Baptists. I go to an IFB church, which I love it. BUT the arrogance and lack of accountability within the leadership ranks of IFB churches is astounding. When you have fellow pastors in IFB churches whose loyalty goes far beyond, far far beyond, what it should… it’s disturbing. When you have fellow pastors covering for child molester pastors and pastors who are obviously in an inappropriate relationship outside of marriage…. their friends in labor… evangelists. pastors. missionary directors. who cover for them. Sick people. There needs to be a NEW Independent Baptists. One without the dictatorship. One without the lack of accountability from all sides of leadership. One without fear. One without a distorted loyalty pact. (all my opinion)

    …based on my life experiences in IFB for almost 40 years.

    • I couldn’t have said it better myself. Thank you for this. It’s nice knowing we are not alone, and at the same time it’s becoming sickening at how widespread the commonality of stories like yours and mine have become.

    • Josh Teis says:

      What you describe is so terrible and nauseating. I’m so sorry that you have experienced this. I’ve only heard of this kind of treachery and never had a chance to see it with my own eyes. I appreciate you being willing to share you experience of spiritual abuse and corrupt leadership. Let us pray for these churches to experience a revival of the Spirit that emphasizes the Gospel above man’s authority and man made rules.

  10. Dan Murray says:

    Very well articulated Pastor Josh. I’m thankful first and foremost to be called into the Gospel ministry. Only four years in, I too have asked myself most if not all of the questions this article directly addressed. Thank you for posting this. As Pastor Steve said, definitely a refreshing read!

  11. David Hodges says:

    Tremendous article. Thank you for the honesty of where we are at and what is going on with this generation of ministers of the gospel!!!

  12. Josh Westmoreland says:

    Wow… This perfectly lines up with my pattern of thought. So happy to know that I’m not alone. Thank you SO very much for penning this article! I became disenchanted with the “ultra-fundy, us 4 and no more” mentality a few years ago. When I stopped caring what everybody else thought about me is when I started to personally and spiritually grow! I will be following you now, and will be sharing this post. Already looking forward to more of what you have to say.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thanks Josh! Welcome to the club. There are more of us than you might expect. Anyway – have you considered coming out for

      • Josh Westmoreland says:

        I don’t know why, but I just now noticed your reply to my comment. Thank you for that. I’ve just re-read this article and am encouraged once again. I also empathize with your update concerning, “patience” for I too struggle with the same thing. I become easily frustrated with others who do not think like me, but then I’m reminded that it has taken me a long time to get where I am, and I still personally have a long way to go mentally, emotionally and spiritually. If I’m honest, I still struggle with some level of bitterness towards how I was raised, and the confusion that met me at the intersection of the Fundy Street and Follower of Christ Avenue. Seriously, thanks again.

  13. Matt Baker says:

    Great read, Pastor Josh. Encouraging to read. Now more than ever, the church needs unity and liberty to give the Gospel out. Our pastor made a very wise statement the other week: “Our church should look like our community”.

    He was very right in that…with all the racial tension across the nation going on, the church should be on the forefront, loving people to Christ, and we can’t do it alone. We MUST do it together.

    Thanks for the great thoughts.

  14. Greg Locke says:

    If IFB churches would’ve emphasized these truths years ago, my departure from them would not have been so bitter and difficult. Good read.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Yours is a sad story I don’t want to see repeated. We’ve never met but I know who you are and have admired your ministry from afar. I appreciate your passion for Christ and your dedication to the Gospel. You have especially inspired me to be more aware of those who are hurting most in our society – homeless, abused children, etc. Thank you for your faithfulness to Christ. Though I don’t know the details – I’m sorry for the things that led to your departure from the Independent Baptist movement. Thankfully, You’ve not allowed that to keep you from doing great things for the Kingdom of Christ! Keep going Greg!

    • Josh Westmoreland says:

      Pastor Greg, I have watched many of your videos and have been greatly encouraged by them. I have always wondered if you had ever been associated with the IFB (maybe due to your “style”?) but now I know!

  15. Mykle Diego says:

    Awesome article! So encouraged to see many of my friends and also older men and leaders feel this same way. Thank you for the fresh perspective and for speaking about some of the most pathetic issues that keep Jesus from being the center of it all.

  16. I cant repost this article enough. You have taken the platform God has given you and are using it to be a voice for truth, in the face of what could be fear. Thank you, Josh, for articulating this so well and for your passion for true biblical orthodoxy. I’m currently commenting to this standing on a rooftop (ironic? Ha) in India. Every time I come here I am more deeply convicted and burdened for the overwhelming need for people all around the world to hear one thing loud and clear >> the unpoluted, undiluted Gospel of Jesus Christ. I, too, am excited about the future of the movement and missions as a greater spirit of collaboration and, yes, unity is being formed by the Spirit of God among the people of God for the glory of God. May it continue!

  17. Robert Martinez says:

    Excellent Article! I did not want it to end! Without a doubt there is more that could be said about us as New Independent Baptists. More particularly about how we need to be careful about not being guilty of the same negativity towards those who are the faces of the negatives of IFB.
    While I have been discouraged by those who have made our movement look nasty and irrelevant, I have also been saddened by those who leave our movement not so quietly… If you know what I mean. Those who do so tend to grab a broad brush and negatively paint the entire IFB movement as all the same. In the end those who do so are guilty of what they were against in the first place.
    Also I think that we need to recognize that there are many upcoming and current young people who are on fire for God who will be watching how us “New IFBs” handle the “pressure” and focus back on the essentials. If we are honest with ourselves, most of us who have been raised from youth in the IFB movement have already seen how “not to” move forward, and we are thus consequently addressing it now. My hope is that we address the issues from a humble, honest and gracious spirit and not create another monster that current and future “new IFBs” will regret either. I hope this makes sense.

    This article is super excellent and I am definitely passing it along bro!

    Thanks Josh!

    • Josh Teis says:

      I agree that we have to be gracious with our critics.

      There are those who God has led to leave the movement into other good denominations. This is a solid choice for some as they continue to follow the Lord’s will.

      There are others who will demand that we too leave the Independent Baptist movement. They will call us naive or worse for attempting to stay and make it more Biblical. We should not attack these people but show them the love of Christ. Many of them have been deeply hurt by ungodly people. We should not add to their pain.

      There are still others who will accuse of leaving Biblical paths and condemn us for attempting to purify the movement. We should NOT fall to the temptation of name calling and judging. Many of these dear people are simply confused about what is fundamental to our faith and what is not. They may get mean – we should not.

      • Robert Martinez says:

        Agreed Josh. Your hitting it right on the head. Appreciate your spirit about the matter.

        Thanks again for the article!

  18. Matt Ehlen says:

    I appreciate the unity and rallying together of like minds of those in our circles this post brings. It encourages me so much as a young millennial to know I’m not alone and gives me great hope for my future as I enter into the rest of my life of ministry.

  19. Chase Kinney says:

    Pastor Josh,
    You’ve summed up my entire feelings in one masterfully written article. I appreciate your stand and grasp of godly knowledge. Thank you for being an encouragement in my life to not conform to tradition, but rather follow the Word!

  20. Masterfully written, my friend, and powerfully true! It articulates my hopes as well! Spot on!

  21. Ben Fleet says:

    This is a very encouraging article to read on the Independent Baptist movement. I personally left the movement and joined the SBC simply because I saw nothing being done in the Independent Baptist movement as far as active church planting, accomplishing the Great Commission and contextualizing the local church. I’m glad to see that change is coming! Maybe down the road, I’ll return to the movement! Thanks, Josh

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thanks for your thoughts Ben. You’d be surprised at the ground-swell of positive gospel change that is happening in the movement. And we’re loving the revival that God is bringing!

  22. Joshua Cehulik says:

    Well written, great emphasis on the gospel. As we enter the Christmas season, just as the prophet Malachi foretold 400 years prior, it will only be the power of Christ and His gospel that can knit together the hearts of children to their fathers, and fathers to their children.

    So it is true that only the power of the gospel can knit our hearts together as well, that all the earth might declare the glory of God by Christ Jesus.

  23. Nancy Bradley says:

    One of the most powerful aspects of our church at Southern Hillls is the promise of surprise and the lack of lockstep to a proscribed sense of service. Having been in Education in Clark County for over 40 years, I can say with certainty we are doing it a better way. Josh, you and the whole team make the week too long and Sunday too short. Gary and I are grateful for every gospel message and learn something new with each encounter.

    • Josh Teis says:

      You and Gary are gifts from God! Those who are actually in our church know that I do very little to keep this place a float. As you mentioned, our team of Fred, Kelly, Jason, Kimberly, Steve, Becky, Zeb, Leah, Bradley, Mikel, Cindy, Melanie, and of course – HEATHER – is what really makes this place special.

  24. Tim says:

    So good. Thanks for sharing this encouragement. I’m part of this younger generation and am thrilled at the possibilities that lie ahead. Will be sharing this.

  25. Brian Fuson says:

    Fantastic post and a great encouragement! God Bless.

  26. Joseph Wicks says:

    Great post, thanks for taking the time to write. As a 30 year old, I stand in agreement with you. I am not in support of working to keep any “movement” alive longer than it should be, but what you described is gospel centered and will outlive any movement made by men.

  27. jeff bailey says:

    just a quick word of encouragement to you who are the new breed of IFB. Don’t give in! Yours is not an act of compromise. I was raised under the Hammond/Longview way. I had to be away from it for a long time, before I realized Who I am, Who I have been in Christ, all along. The Old way is more about religious living…rather than a persuit of an intimate relationship with our Savior. God Bless You. Till he comes.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thanks Jeff. I’ve never had interaction with the “Hammond/Longview way” but I’ve heard many sad things. Needless to say, that’s not us.

      • Corey Seulean says:

        Not all is sad. There are many good things that happened in Hammond and continue to happen even now. It is true that there have been sad things occur but please do not be mistaken into thinking it was all sad. I am a graduate of HAC and I thank God for my goodly heritage. Please understand that I am not necessarily against all that you have written but I think there is a lot of good in the “Hammond way.” I have chosen to take from the best that they have offered and let go of what was not. Even though there have been problems for sure, it is the closest thing to Book of Acts Christianity that I have found. Eternity will reveal the impact of the great men of God that helped to forge our IFB movement.

        • Josh Teis says:

          again, I’ve never had personal interaction with Hyles / Anderson. I’m thankful it was a good experience for you.

        • Former HAC grad and now free in Christ. says:

          Look at the book of acts with clear Holy Spirit eyes and you will find a totally different experience than what you experienced in Hammond.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Greetings, and Salutations: Taking the advice from the new generation instead of the older caused the kingdom under Rehoboam to be split. We in essence have a northern kingdom and a southern kingdom today. We are not split geographically, but philosophically, and theologically. The split today is over many of the issues that were written about, simply put because we are listening to the new age, fluffy feel good, tingle, rock and roll service people, instead of asking for the old path’s faith that was once passed down from the saints. Jude 3 The new is a dead end street that leaves us with no goodly heritage and no bridge to anything that appears consistent. You perhaps once towed the line on truth but now are enamored with letting your hair down, raising the hem line-lowering the neck line, no night service, no altar call, and the typical hip hop flip flop, and shaking everything that God gave you service. Some of us are fed up with this rock and roll mayhem and the tearing down of everything that is Godly in our generation. It is non-productive to question everything that was handed to us, and it is only swelling the local pastor and body and not truly growing it. Our grandparents must be rolling in their graves to see you participate in what we only use to see in a concert hall. Excuse me this is not earnestly contending, this is caving in to the pressure of the world. II Corinthians. 6;`7-`8; James 4:4 I challenge each one of you who are going in the new emergent church direction to take away the live band music for 90 days and see how many are still there when it is simply church. I truly believe that in the end that the one world church will be the faddish sway church that unites all in the name of unity, yet it is not the true church that Jesus started and that has been perpetuated by the Holy Spirit. Mt. 16:18 We are suppose to try the spirits to see if it is of God. I John 4:1 I can tell you that the true church is the one that receives persecution. Rick Warren said, “that the independent fundamental Baptist are the real enemy.” It is sad, but many of you believed him and bought into this mentality. Some of you took the name Baptist off the sign or are presently pushing the envelope to do so and are using your latest success in numbers as a litmus test of right and wrong. II Corinthians 10:`12 “For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.”

    Prayers for you, Bro. Stephen Crane

    1 John 4:1 King James Version

    Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

    • Anonymous says:

      To Anonymous. Thank you for proving the author’s point

    • Anonymous says:

      This comment is the only thing worthwhile here. The direction of these new churches is scary and concerning. Look and be different from the world, don’t make changes to attract it.

      • Amber Fuller says:

        Anonymous, why don’t you put your name to your comments? You must think “highly” of yourself to say that your comment is the only thing worthwhile.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Dear Bro. Crane,
      Thank you for responding to this post. I can see that you are truly passionate about keeping the church of God on track. I commend you for this. I also want to assure you that we value the godly heritage passed on to us by our fathers. The greatest thing we have received is the Bible and our dedication to study its contents to find direction for our current lives and ministries. We (the New Independent Baptists) will continue to focus on Bible Authority above all else. This will be the greatest tribute we can give to the forefathers of our faith.

    • Wow! Did you even read the article? The author, who I do not personally know, said nothing about leaving the old paths of church or changing to have a contemporary service. There seems to be some bitterness hiding behind your anonymity. The spirit of the article is one of keeping Biblical principles without the opinions of the established denominational tradition. Doing things just because they have always been that way is no longer a good enough reason. It is time to change our world for Christ, and as brethren we should love and support those who are making a difference. Just a thought, I bet you preach against colored shirts too! Let’s be real in our relationship with Christ and shine as lights in the world!

      • To Whomever May Read This Comment,
        In response to my own comment, I apologize for the sarcasm toward Anonimous. This is the spirit that I must avoid going forward. We have a great heritage and it is because of the individual pastors in my life, (not idols or gods) that I am in the ministry today. They invested in me and now watch from heaven and other parts of this earth to see how I will fair. They loved me in the mentoring process, and for that I owe them a debt of gratitude and faithfulness. Let their labor of love for God in me not be in vain! It is these men that are yet living that I turn to in time of need for wisdom. These men make themselves available to counsel this young preacher when I have a need. They have been and continue to invest in me. For this I am grateful. I hope that my apology is received. It is sincere.

    • Rudy says:

      I wondered how far I would have to scroll down to find a negative response to this article, and was pleasantly surprised by how far it was.

      An excellent challenge: take away the live band music for 90 days and see how many are still there when it is simply church. That’s not a bad idea, and it would be quite revealing.

      You might lose a few who just come for the show. When I was naive I thought people stayed in a church because of the CCM. It might be why they came, but it’s definitely not why they stay.

      Take away the live band for 90 days and I believe you would still have those whose lives have been touched by the gospel. You would still have those who have found hope, help, and encouragement in their small group. You would still have those who are hungry to grow and learn Truth, hungry for fellowship, hungry for accountability. You would still have those who are trying to overcome addiction through the help of a local church. You would still have those who are serving others on a regular basis. You would have those who work in a secular environment and come to church to be refreshed before stepping back into the lost world of office politics, arrogant leaders, judgmental coworkers, and hypocritical policies (hmmm…those traits sound familiar).

      I challenge you, Anonymous, to stop running buses for 90 days, eliminate the choir for 90 days, put away the hymnals for 90 days, require that no one dress differently on Sunday than they do the rest of the week for 90 days, and do not meet in a church building for 90 days, and “see how many are still there when it is simply church.”

      I’ll take the advice of the “new generation” if they’re getting it from God’s Word before I’ll take the advice of the “old generation” if they are teaching for doctrine the commandments of men (Matthew 15:9).

      Members of churches like the ones you say have caved certainly do suffer persecution. Talk to their members and see how they fare in the workplace, in their lost families, or when confronted self-righteous Christians. Believe me, no true follower of God is without persecution.

      False prophets don’t preach the truth. I challenge you to listen to the strong preaching of men you say have caved.

      Surely, Bro. Crane, God is using you to reach some people that would not be reached by Josh Teis. And it is certain that God is using Josh Teis to bring people to the knowledge of Christ who would be turned off by your spirit, as well-intentioned as it may be.

      Luke 9:49-50 And John answered and said, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name; and we forbad him, because he followeth not with us. And Jesus said unto him, Forbid him not: for he that is not against us is for us.

      Luke 9:54-55 And when his disciples James and John saw this, they said, Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did? But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of.

    • Mike Ritter says:

      I thought this was a satirical post at first and was laughing out loud because it so perfectly encapsulates the antithetical of the article. Then, I realized Bro. Crane is posting his genuine convictions.

      Bro. Crane sounds like the folks I grew up in churches who held tightly to their cultural traditions soo tightly they did not realize they were practicing a form of religion and calling evil what the LORD has sanctified.

      These old guard are sincere saints trying to hold fast to what is familiar culturally without realizing the amazing things the LORD is doing in these strange new practices. Bro. Crane’s own “litmus test” is proof of his bias. These are not strictly biblical standards for a New Testament church.

      Certainly, we MUST “test the spirits” to make certain they are of God and practice our faith (including our modes of congregational worship) as we leave behind the 1960s model of doing church. My Greek Orthodox friends shake their heads at us arguing over these matters because they really can point back centuries to the origin of their practices. Their liturgy is quite restrictive.

      I would challenge believers like Bro. Crane to dig deeper into understanding these matters. I could write a book on all of his mischaracterizations of both traditional fundamentalist modes of worship and more contemporary modes. His generalizations –particularly equating this movement with emergent Christianity– are unfair. This is not some watered-down people-pleasing ear-tickling heresy. It is not watering down the gospel. It is not a hedonistic dance club.

      I like to recall to these brothers and sisters that some of their favorite hymns were once considered heretical and their standards of propriety in worship once cutting-edge and culturally-relevant, even their English translation of the scripture.

    • I think the passage about Rehoboam is a valid and important one to point out as one considers what this blog espouses.

    • Eric Tastet says:

      Ironically the story of Rehobaom does not defend your case. The older generation was saying “be kind, take it easy, show these people something different.” It was the younger generation that said to be more strict and harder on the people. I’d consider this an oxymoron to your intention of it’s example.

  29. Ben says:

    Thank you for the article. I left the IFB a few years ago and now pastor within the SBC. I sincerely hope you and those like you succeed. What you describe is what we have. There will be detractors who point at that very statement as a evidence of “compromise” but thank you for being sincere and honest in your seeking after a Biblical Christianity and God glorifying faith.

  30. James Bake says:

    I thought I was the only one! Thank you for the encouragement! This is with no exageration, the best article I’ve ever read on this subject.
    I’m so sick of traditionalism, and constant babbling about skirts, ccm, and who’s in your “circle” let’s just reach people! And quit judging each other! Churches are being split over carpet colors for crying out loud!!!

  31. Josh, this post was so great I had to read it twice. Thanks for speaking out and being a voice on this matter. Looking forward to reading the upcoming blog post.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thanks David. Honestly, I think 2nd degree separation is one of the greatest errors we have allowed into our movement. I will be dealing with it at length.

  32. Todd Stricklin says:

    Wonderfully refreshing and encouraging. Once again find myself agreeing with what a visionary has said…NOT necessarily what others have said about it…

  33. Rebekah Bowe says:

    Thanks for this refreshing view. We had to leave a IFB movement that was so wrapped up in numbers and rules that boxed you in a very work based type Christianity. Seriously, we felt if we did not follow this box of rules and live inside this church that God would not bless us but judge us and punish us. Really this is what the Bible teaches!!?? A God of rules that have to be obeyed or else God punishes you? I can remember doing everything in this box of rules and reading my Bible and praying everyday but not feeling God in my life. Crying and asking God where He was…. I was doing everything right. If I dared to ask counsel from the Pastor, I was told that I was messing up in my walk with God and I had a bitter heart. Actually, farthest from the truth. I sincerely wanted God. I wanted to be close to him. It almost destroyed my family and in desperation we left that church for a non legalistic IFB church that teaches ALL the fundamentals of the Bible and yet has NO legalistic views. Wow, when we found out God wants my heart not my box of rules….. What a difference in my Christian life. We now love God more than before because our focus is on Him NOT rules. Trust me, that is the key:) Thanks for the insight.

    • Josh Teis says:

      I’m so thankful that the Lord led you to a healthy church. I’m sorry that you had to experience such heartache in the process. God bless you on your journey. As you so beautifully stated, He wants your heart!

  34. Josh, you have eloquently and succinctly articulated whay many of us who are IFB preachers in our 30’s believe. Spot on!

  35. Anonymous says:

    I agree that a lot of old line independent Baptists were legalistic and overly concerned about what others thought about them, but the bible is clear that we as believers are to abstain from even the appearance of evil. There is growing a new
    group of worshippers who don’t seem to know the bible’s God . They are focused on. their own feelings and what they want the
    bible to say rather than what it clearly says. I’ve seen coffee and donuts bible study turned into beer and pretzels literally. God cannot be pleased with this. I have also seen those who comment regarded as the enemy.

    • Andrea S says:

      Please respectfully capitalize the word “Bible” especially if you’re trying to defend your stand on it.

    • Mark says:

      Anonymous :
      You will be taken more seriously if you learn the real meaning of 1 Thessalonians 5:22. In fact, you might have to retract your entire statement. When the KJV was first written in the 17th century, the word “appearance” meant something entirely different than it does today. I have no problem with you using the KJV. The issue is when you misunderstand a verse because you do not realize the English language has changed over time. You would do well to become better educated my friend.
      Mark Wiggin

    • Joseph Baxter says:

      Just to clarify: Do you mean to say by “legalist” that these people taught one had to obey the Law to become and/or stay Saved?

  36. Haleigh says:

    While I appreciate the sentiment of unity, and I agree with about 75% of what has been written here, I wonder if we are on the verge of a catastrophic swing in the IFB pendulum. Are we to sacrifice the tried and tested on the altar of the convenient? Are the old ways of singing songs, hymns, and spiritual songs to be replace by thinly veiled attempts at enticing a younger crowd? My fear is, that the IFB community will begin the persecution of the good old fashioned tie wearing, devil hating, people loving, hymn singing preacher that built these churches. In the spirit of unity, let’s just do what the Bible says, love others, and conduct ourselves in a Christ like manner.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thank you for your thoughts! I believe that it is wrong to create unnecessary division in the church where God desires unity. This is why I believe the Independent Baptist movement is the perfect place to demonstrate individuality and unity. Some of our churches will be more formal and traditional while others will be more contemporary and relaxed. This is completely appropriate. What is inappropriate is to label someone a legalist simply because they are more conservative or a liberal simply because they are more contemporary. Same on message, different on methods, and unified in spirit. This is the future we are creating.

    • Mandy says:

      I didn’t know the Bible said anything about wearing ties and singing “hymns”. There are many types of music and songs that uplift God. Just because it’s a different style or sound doesn’t mean it’s not a hymn. I don’t think David sang his songs to a piano and organ. My point is things change over time, and it’s not evil! Focus on Jesus and not tradition; it’ll be ok! 🙂

    • 1968 says:

      You are completely RIGHT!!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Haleigh, I was raised just as you say….I cannot explain but my Spirit was always hurting, even after searching for peace in two well known IFB colleges. It was not until I went several times to Guatemala that I found real church. It was there I I saw Jesus in the hearts of a church for the first time, with adults in torn clothes and barefoot. I heard them praising Christ with their drums and homemade instruments and it was like the heavenly choir. I watched people laugh and dance while worshiping their Savior… He was everything to them, so beautiful in their eyes that every emotion they had was poured out to His name… Clapping, crying, singing, dancing, stomping… This was no Pentecostal movement but true adoration of their creator. With everything in me I longed to bottle that true church up and take it home with me to give to people who were more concerned with attire and being separate than with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. My encouragement to you is to think outside of where you are… Think of a world of people who have no hymnals, no ties, no church buildings… God is not the God of the limited. His power is declared and proclaimed with a pair of jeans just as boldly as a suit… His greatness is felt in a contemporary song as powerfully as a hymn… His beauty is seen in jumping up and down in praise as it is in an “amen” while waving your Bible. When you truly see Him for who He is, you realize that the Jesus talked about in the New Testament was always doing ministry with the common man and having righteous anger at “religious leaders” who confined His love to rules. I completely get your heart… I encourage you to seek past the old ways and just look at His ways outlined in the Bible… No denomination there, no tried and true methods, just a radical Savior loving the ones the religious rejected

  37. Josh says:

    Great post! Thank you for saying what many of us have been thinking and feeling as well! I greatly appreciate this post and the encouragement to keep following Jesus, to live in the Gospel, to proclaim the Gospel, and to patiently make a difference in our movement. I believe God has great things on the horizon for the IFB! Thanks for writing.

  38. Todd Giesen says:

    Great article that took a TON of courage…

  39. Max Molyneux says:

    I was reared in mostly Protestant denominations, United Presbyterian and United Methodist churches. I “came out” of those traditions via early involvement in an AWANA program, an IFB church, and Sword of the Lord literature in 1979. One of the biggest changes I have witnessed since then has been the domination of so many churches by KJV-onlyism. There had long been a preference for the KJV, but the idolatry within KJVO movement has caused me to wonder if there aren’t any additional lies in their theology. As far as church standards of dress or musical taste, these are decisions that have to be made by individuals, families and churches as they search the Scriptures. I don’t believe, however, that having a musician in tight jeans, swinging his hips at the front of the church is what many of us would consider worshipful. Also, the older hymns seem to cover a broader range of topics beyond the repetitive praise songs that have become the new liturgy of so many modern churches. Another tendency that I’ve seen weakening among the IFBs is a decline in the condemnation of the recreational consumption of alcohol and tobacco. On the flip side of this, I have heard several condemnations of psychiatric medicine. As a nurse for over 20 years and, having had several relatives suffer from mental illnesses, I can testify that so many of the psychiatric medicines are beneficial, and some are essential for allowing some individuals to live outside institutions. Authoritarianism is a danger in every church; there are always going to be individuals, whether they are pastors or lay leaders, who employ their “leadership” skills to bully everyone into following their way. It is refreshing to see a church which faithfully employs Robert’s Rules during business meetings, and I would avoid joining any church that has no clear constitution and statement of faith–the absence of which ensures eventual cultism. The altar call, the Roman’s Road and tracts at the front of the church are all useful means to get people saved and sanctified; but making these a cause for separation is to develop a new ritualism. The Bible admonishes believers to judge righteously, and studying the errors that surround us in the light of Scripture will help define where the IFB “movement” is going. These include but are not limited to Neo-evangelicalism, KJV-onlyism, Landmarkism, Hyper-Calvinism, Catholicism, Protestantism, Evolutionism and old-earth theories, Mormonism, Seventh Day Adventism, Pentacostalism and the Charismatic movement. Finally, I would like to add that relationships and involvement in the church are better than professional entertainment at building churches. Many members have the ability to sing, for example, so why not invite a variety of individuals or groups to provide special music (even if they sing off-key)? Instead of a superficial meet-and-greet time every Sunday, why don’t you have a personal testimony every week? Pick a man out every month, other than the pastor, to give a sermon. Make time for coffee between Sunday school and church. Just some thoughts. Thank you.

  40. David Crist says:

    Great article Josh! Pleasure to know you! It was Exciting as I traveled the nation for those three years doing ministry with PCC to see all that God was and is doing in the New IFB churches! I am so thankful to be on the pastoral staff at one of those growing and exciting churches that is reaching the community weekly with God’s love and seeing individuals lives changed! Very Rewarding and super exciting!

  41. Michael Doering says:

    Ive never posted on a blog before but could not resist the opportunity here. This was so well written and balanced I had to read it twice. I was a heathen all my life until I accepted Christ at 18 years of age, so I was not reared in the IBF. I am an independent baptist missionary serving in the Dominican Republic. Hope to meet you someday. You’ve hit a nerve here…

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thanks Michael. That’s nice of you to say. My dad taught us that missionaries are heroes. So – thanks for your ministry bro!

  42. Anonymous says:

    These are great points and spell out why my wife and I mostly walked away from IFB-ism a few years ago. In a world where Christians are beheaded on YouTube, it is the height of pharisaism to quibble over musical styles and whether women’s clothing should connect in the middle. I betcha Christians in the Middle East aren’t worried about who sang “Shout To The Lord” last Sunday.

    Lots of people I know I have turned their back on the movement for various reasons. In my time I met some sincerely wonderful Christ followers. It is for their impact in my life I will never write it off completely. I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one in this group.

    Seeing posts like these from Independent Baptists young and old makes me think we will see a new, stronger movement in the future; one that has shed the unbiblical baggage of the past.

  43. Kevin mouring says:

    Well said. I am a student at virginia baptist collage in Fredericksburg va, an employee of faith baptist church and schools in Fredericksburg, and a member of Calvary baptist in Smithfield va. And what U articulate in this article is exactly what I see . Drastically different with the same doctrine . People taking up the cross rather than tradition. Treating the bible as the final authority. not the opinion of some, but a lighthouse for all

  44. Lexi Thompson says:

    I can’t stop reading this post! My favorite quote was “Fear will cause a man to sacrifice transparency at the altar of influence.” I saw a great deal of comparing and competition among the IFB churches growing up, but things have definitely changed for the better! Many pastors have now chosen the path of humility as they admit that they are neither perfect people, and their people respect them all the more for it. While it’s scary to submit to such transparency, the church knows that their pastor is growing by God’s grace just as they are. They are approachable pastors, not intimidating. I’m so thankful to have a father/pastor who pastors transparently with his people, and encourages fellow pastors as a friend and also gleans from their insight. I have also been encouraged to see many young men at my Bible college who are excited and revved to do the work of the Lord! A few of them have even commented on this article! There is so much to look forward to!

    • Josh Teis says:

      Agreed Lexi! Transparency is the key. People don’t need us to Fake it! People need authentic leaders to follow. We must BE REAL!

      • Max Molyneux says:

        Yes. I would say that there is generally more humility among IFBs in the past few decades. People are tired of being herded by cowboys and want the leadership of a shepherd. Transparency is part of humility. If there is some dispute between individuals or groups that can’t be settled privately, the congregation has a right to know what’s happening. Too often, significant events occur and important decisions are made behind the scenes, and the people that are investing their lives in the church are left out of the loop. From a business standpoint, visitors should be visited soon after they begin attending; and attenders who “disappear” should be visited ASAP. What attracted them to the church? What caused them to leave? What can we do to bring them back? If someone is moving out of the area, help them reconnect with a like-minded church in that area.

  45. Brynn Margaux says:

    I really needed this article today!! My husband and I graduated from an IFB college in the late 90’s. We were hired at the Baptist church where my husband grew up and spent 17 hellish years under a tyrannical Pastor. The pay was so low that we qualified for government assistance. Of course, the Pastor and his children on staff commanded salaries reserved for Silicon Valley CEOs, irregardless of qualifications. So dedicated was I to the church that I sold my wedding ring for the building fund program….which has been ongoing for 14+ years and has produced no building. Seventeen years of misogyny, bullying, hatemongering, and propaganda campaigns just about broke us. I know there are countless Christians out there with a story like ours. And that’s why Josh’s article and having a forum like this is SO important. Keep up the good work, Josh. Keep encouraging the brethren and ministering to the broken hearted. BTW, I’m still in an IFB church and my husband and I have found great healing. Our Pastor is loving, kind, preaches the Word with courage and grace, and his congregation is just like him. And the deacon board fiercely protects the church finances. Yes, folks, IFB churches like this do exist. Thanks again for the great article!!!

  46. Phil Hinson says:

    This is a great article! This is without compromise and right on the money. This is the direction that God has led me in my ministry from the old school mean IBC to Pastor my first church just for a few years but flourishing. We are currently evangelizing sharing the love of God with the truth of God’s word. Please check us out on our new Facebook “inyourshoesministries”. We want to help the hurting all over the world. I will share this because I believe in this. God continually bless you.

  47. Kim Chambers says:

    Josh, seems to me that the “new Baptists” are no different than and “old Baptists” I enjoyed the article! Prov. 3:5-6.

  48. Josh Teis says:

    Thanks Tony. I hear what you are saying. And I agree… too much baggage for me to handle alone. But I thrill at the many hundreds of young ministry leaders who are choosing to return to the roots of the Gospel rather than the roots of a movement. The Independent Baptist movement, like the entirety of christendom, has had far too many villains. I believe this is now changing. Pray for us.

    • Rudy says:

      Why do we cling to the name Baptist? In a movement that longs to be biblical, why DO we cling to something not espoused by Scripture? And something with so much baggage? Why not call ourselves Christian churches or community churches or just churches?

      Paul Chapell’s book about the road forward for IFBs had some good points but failed to address the theological errors that led to so many churches to unbiblical, sometimes abusive positions and practices. I wish you would explore those and hit them head on.

      For example, often the pastor is seen as the highest calling. Is this biblical? See how it can lead to abuses…

  49. Josh Hall says:

    I loved your article. I couldn’t have said it better myself. What you stated needs to be brought to light. Sadly many of the “big-wigs” will deny and disagree with your post. It was refreshing and an encouragement to read your post. Thank you for stepping out, and telling it as it is. Praying your attitude and spirit will spread among independent baptists.

  50. Bryan Ries says:

    This is Josh Teis and he’s my friend!

  51. Richard Caalem says:

    Great article Pastor Josh.

  52. Sharon says:

    Many of these “new IFB-ers” were on the platform at conferences with Jack Schaap, all the way up to the end. Schaap inflicted so much damage to the cause of Christ long before his discovered crimes with all his shaky doctrine, much taken out of books from neo-evangelicals. Now these same men, less than 5 years later, are trying to re-identify after they followed a charletan for so many years.
    Decades ago, a great man of God told my pastor, “There are many men pastoring who should never be pastoring.” He was so right.
    A concern I would have is this shaky stand on soulwinning. Gone are the days of many teaching their church people how to give a clear Gospel message with the Romans Road. Sure, there’s plenty of tract-passing-out and flyer distribution, but very little confrontation soulwinning. It’s sad and poor substitution.

  53. Dan Wolfe says:

    I’m afraid you’re a bit naive and not fully acquainted with the history of Independent Baptists. I am a bit older and have known the men who knew the men who started the Independent Baptist movement. From what I’ve witnessed, there has always been pastors like the ones you describe as new. I don’t see it as a new thing. Perhaps it’s new to you cause you have broken away from a tight circle of pastors who you feel lead opposite of your points. It seems like you are stereotyping all based on your limited experience. Plus, I don’t think all who you deem as Old IB necessarily fit the negative pall you cast in the points of your article, nor do I feel all your self defined “new” IB adhere to each “positive” virtue you ascribe them. I do think that any man who answers the call of God to pastor answers a high calling and should be lead of God to lead his flock. Not judged or measured by the Old IB pastors or the New IB standards you propose.

    • Susan McCurdy says:

      This is a great observation!

    • Anonymous says:

      My thoughts exactly Bro. Wolfe!

    • jeriwho says:

      (agreeing with Sharon)

    • Kevin B says:

      I agree 100% Dan, I was saved in an old fashioned conservative Independent KJV Baptist church. I have been in literally 100’s of them in my travels as a missionary. They are not legalistic or hard, but kind hearted, loving, gracious people who have a love for lost souls and Gods Word. They are also the most giving when it comes to missions and church planting. I totally disagree with the broad painted negative tone that this article gives to traditional IFBC. I am speaking from experience, not from hearsay….

  54. Ed Rodriguez says:

    Josh my hope for the Independent movement has been articulated well in this blog post.

    It’s been a joy to fellowship and worship with brethren who are fundamental in the absolutes yet come from different denominations.

    When I pastoredo outside of Richmond, Virginia I enjoyed fellowship with Presbyterian, Episcopalian, Methodist pastors who I joined arms with in reaching our community with the gospel of Jesus Christ.

    I took my fair share if criticism from fellow alumi. Keep going and don’t worry about the critics.

    Stay humble Josh.

    Your brother,


  55. Grayson Massey says:

    I believe that most IFB churches need to heed the admonition of Christ to the churches in the book of Revelation: repent and do the first works. Let go of the hyper separation mentality, realize that there are sincere, Christ honoring believers who don’t subscribe to every tenet that they require, and get back to the task of reaching people for Jesus. Lift up the Lord first and foremost. Allow Him to draw people to Him. And do away with the practice of replacing sound doctrine with personal preferences. Until this is done, the IFB movement will continue its steady descent into irrelevance.

  56. Missionary says:

    I agree wholeheartedly with your article. So many churches are stuck in the old ways and afraid of change or afraid of using ideas because they came from outside the IFB movement, this they must be unbiblical. As I am on deputation, I deal with this very closely as I contact hundreds of churches and fill out questionnaires that nitpick my stance on issues. It seems that so many are so stuck in the old ways that they want to disqualify a missionary before they will accept them to support them. There has to be a new IFB movement or the missions programs will die. Fellowships that once thrived are dying, dead, or on life support. We must get back to the first things, our first love, Christ.

  57. Great article. Discovered these same truths about 20 years ago. It cost me friends in the Independent “movement” when I shared my beliefs. However, it was very freeing to live the scripture without fear of what other independents thought. I really believe many of these men are good men, they are just locked into an independent baptist peer group that is very controlling.
    The day’s of gauging church spirituality by dress standards, or worship style should be gone, but sadly they are alive and well. May we return to our roots. Independent Baptist were the greatest soul winning churches in America. Somewhere we lost our way and the main thing is no longer the main thing.

    • Scott Blanchard says:

      Hey, Pastor G.! Thank you for allowing me to follow in your journey when you hired me 17 years ago and for helping me to see the light. When I left the movement and became a part of your church, I was deemed a liberal by many former friends as well. At the end of the day, all I care about was pleasing God and not man.

      Josh, glad to see where you are today. Just remember that the fear of man is a trap but the fear of God will keep you safe. (Proverbs 29:25). This verse was my rallying cry during my time of transition. God bless.

  58. Anonymous says:

    I grew up hearing things one way; I finally bought into them. Just a few years down the road, everything starts to change. Now, leaders and people treat me as if I’m crazy. They are the ones who changed; and yes, they have no patience with those of us who are trying to figure this out. Some on this site have proven this with their comments. I do not buy into this New Independent Baptists movement at all. Did the old Independent Baptists accomplish nothing? As an independent Baptist, I should have the Bible as my sole authority and seek to learn doctrine and serve others in my local church. I’m sick of the politics of all this.

    • Missionary says:

      It’s not that they are wrong or did not accomplish anything, it’s simply that they are stuck in 1963 and are not motivated to reach the current world we live in. We teach cross cultural missions in seminary, but do not apply that teaching to the new generation of people we are trying to reach in the states. What has changed? Everything,but our stance. Our methodology must adapt or die.

  59. Anonymous says:

    My family was reached via doorknocking; I wear a suit, shirt, and tie to church; and I believe that the KJV is the only authoritative Word of God for the English-speaking person. Yet, (I know this will amaze you.) I still manage to serve the teenagers in my church based on Biblical principles the Holy Spirit taught me. Maybe God doesn’t except this because I certainly am not the most culturally-relevant person.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Dear Anonymous,
      On the contrary – I believe that God can use a variety of different ministries and a variety of different methods with a variety of different ministers. I’m thankful that God is using you and still surprised that He is using me. God bless your work my friend.

      • Anonymous says:

        I appreciate this gracious comment as opposed to just telling me to change my methodology. Can you please just understand my frustration? The change is coming so fast. I’m not sure if or when I’ll get there, but somebody needs to slowly and lovingly walk us especially young ones like me through this change. When you used to say one thing; and now, you say the opposite without admitting you’be changed and telling why you changed, it is frustrating. Many act like this is who we’ve always been and what’s wrong with you for being that way! Listen, I’m 20 years old and an unashamed independent fundamental Baptist because of what the Bible says. I’m KJV only because of what the Bible says. I’m local church only because of what the Bible says. Yes, you can take these stances and words and carry them to the extreme, but they don’t have to carry with them bad connotations.

        • Eric Tastet says:

          To Anonymous – I trust you will understand with a spirit of grace the intention of this article. I am a first generation Christian myself (sounds like you are too). My family is still atheist to this day. My world view as a teenager and young adult are different than what they are today. I was also reached by a soulwinner! Praise God for that! But the issue is this: When the WAY we worship is equal with WHO we worship there will always be conflict. Josh is a KJV pastor and an extremely conservative man of God and a dear personal friend of mine. This article speaks of methodology, old vs. new. It’s just a different context of how we do church and reach people – these are not doctrinal issues, they are different ways to reach our world. Example – I grew up in Anchorage, AK. We didn’t surf up there (there are cray people that do). We are not a destination for surfing, however the brand “Billibong” was worn by a lot of people, myself included. Billibong is a surf clothing company, but in order to reach the demographic of places that were not “surfing” communities, they marketed different and sold coats and sweaters! It was wrong, it was appropriate expansion. Get the analogy? It’s not a matter of right and wrong, it’s a matter of reaching within cultural context of each demographic.

        • Josh Teis says:

          Hey man! Glad to have the question. I would say 1st of all. Stay true to the #1 thing we’ve been taught in our Baptist Churches: Biblical Authority! If you stay true to the Bible you will be just fine. One book that helped me tremendously was Grace Awakening by Chuck Swindoll. Pastor Swindoll is respected across denominational lines and even loved by Independent Baptist leaders. You’ll be hard pressed not to find a pastor without one of his tremendous books (well-worn, highlighted, and dog-eared) on his shelf. Pick up this book and see if what he speaks about is Biblical. (If you are in a position that you can not afford the book and still would promise to read it – I will personally purchase a copy for you and send it) God bless you my friend.

        • Jamie Baldwin says:

          You just keep doing what you are doing and you will be fine. This so called new stuff isn’t what God you saved. This so called new stuff isn’t the reason you have THE WORD OF GOD KJV ONLY. This so called new stuff isn’t what the Apostle Paul died for so that we can have the Bible to grow in grace and to have that relationship that God so desperately wants to have withbus daily. Remember Paul taught others the same way you and I received Christ as Our Personal SAVIOUR but they left him and tried their new stuff. Paul said that he believed and was persuaded that what was in the Bible was TRUE even when he knew he was about to die. Because of Paul we are able to have the TRUE WORD OF GOD that led us to Salvation. So you keep going with that old school mindset because that is how these brethren and sisters received Christ as their personal Savior also

      • Phil Prettyman says:

        Josh, I buried this reply in the middle of your blog purposely. I doubt few will read through the whole thing again and catch this. I want to make a formal appeal to you to please remove the ungodly banter from this blog, so that it doesn’t become a tool in the hands of the enemy to derail some searching lost person. (If you haven’t read my first reply, it’s at the very end of this blog) I remember watching the 20/20 that uncovered horrible things present in some IFB churches, and was sickened to see how the enemy was using it to give a black eye (a BAD one!) to all those who call themselves independent Baptists. I fear this blog and the discussion will have the same affect. I don’t think that’s your desire. So, for better or worse, I’m asking you to consider removing at least the dialogue that has potential harm to good men and good churches.

  60. John Allen says:

    Great article Josh. It gives us older guys who want to see change happen in our circles some hope that it can be constructive and most importantly, biblical. Old paths seem to be defined by those who use the term, but sadly, too many “old paths” are no older than the 60s. All the points are spot-on, but the part about being “well-read” strikes a chord with me. Too long we have acted like our reading materials had to have some sort of imprimatur on the inside cover, and we became totally inbred in our thinking. There was no challenge to our thought processes, and getting a solid education was frowned upon. We raised a generation of those seeking the name “doctor” with an extreme lack of knowledge of how to speak into our culture. Keep up the good work brother.

  61. Matthew Lyon says:

    Great article, Josh.

  62. Just wanted to say I love this piece. As an Independent Baptist I find myself often disagreeing with others within the denomination over their lack of willingness to work with anyone who is not Independent Baptist. The speed with which our denomination is known to denounce others has become a defining factor. When the disciples came to Christ and told him they had found someone casting out devils in his name, but they had put a stop to it because this person was not within their group, Christ reprimanded them. He said that if someone was not against him, then they were for him. This is a valuable piece of doctrine we could all put into practice in our lives.

    Great article here!

    • Josh Teis says:

      I agree that current Independent Baptists ought work together with other denominations who are gospel centered and theologically sound. Many would however we have a very unbiblical practice called 2nd degree separation that brings fear and eventually leads to isolation. I will be writing about this very soon. It must change.

    • bdub says:

      Josh, thanks for your comment. Just a FYI, your dad was there to help me when I needed it. I appreciated his guidance. I can’t remember the name of the church he was in after Robertson Chapel, but I was in town one week and he helped me make a tough decision. Best and hardest decision I ever made.

  63. James Walsh says:

    Great article, Josh! As a fellow graduate of PCC, I enjoy watching your ministry and seeing how God is working in other alumni. Three years ago, God brought my wife out of the IFB “fundy” crowd and into a new life of Grace that I never knew existed! God has been so good to lead us into a church that puts it’s greatest emphasis on Exalting God and His Word, above all else. Through this change, we have found liberty that I never knew was possible, but with a greater desire for Holiness than ever before. This was so against what I had heard or even preached myself for years, but by God’s Grace and in His Providential timing, it is possible. I once stood as the VP of ministerial class at PCC, proud of my righteous ways and proud of the “old path”. Today I kneel humbly at my Saviors feet and thank HIM genuinely for the change HE has Sovereignly done in my heart and life. Let us continue to pray that God brings sound teaching and application to the hearts of His people, as this is our only hope. I especially appreciate your humble responses to the opposition, of this article. I will now begin praying with you for your ministry. You have a great platform, so use it for His Glory! Fellow servant of the KING! -James Walsh

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thanks James. I too am thankful for my time at PCC. They, along with my parents, were the very people who put me on the path of staying true to Scripture. I’m thankful for our common heritage and look forward to our common goal.

  64. Matt Allen says:

    When I moved to the jungle of Papua New Guinea in 2003, among a group of people without any idea what carpet is not that it had colors, I was forced to answer the “Why’s?” of doing church.

    For people who have no pants, a tie is silly.
    For people who walk 2 hours to church, an evening service is unneeded torture.
    For people who have no musical instruments, a band is impossible.

    I have had the awesome privilege of walking with a people group through their first generation of Christianity, and I’m glad to report that neckties aren’t that important. They have no idea who any celebrity IFB pastor in America is. In fact, they call me Pastor Matt.

    It’s refreshing here. Christianity as it should be. People loving Christ and making Him known.

    We have Baptist on the sign, but we aren’t stuck in a rut.

    Thanks, Josh, for helping steer towards Christ.

  65. Aaron Vance says:

    Excellent article, brother. Look forward to meeting you some day.

  66. Jason Holt says:

    Great read! I couldn’t agree with you more.

  67. Rick Palma says:

    GOOD READ FOR SURE, but I’m not so sure about the whole New & Old IFB.
    Never considered myself either, just an IFB.
    Too many people get offended by what others say or don’t say. Some are always looking for the approval of men rather than God.
    I THOUGHT BEING AN IFB gave us the liberty to be ourselves. Of coarse NOT in BIBLE DOCTRINE OR BIBLE CONVICTIONS. As a good Bible student one can not do the ministry of God properly unless he does it God’s way.
    There’s nothing wrong with the OLD or the NEW IFB as it was stated as long as it follows Christ’s design. We see in the Bible that God used different men and different methods to do different things. I don’t think God wants robots or He would of made them. He wants to use who WE are.
    If we read books that are Doctrinally sound than we shouldn’t get influenced to change how God’s ministry is run or done on Sundays.
    I firmly agree that Doctrine should determine fellowship, not the differences on how a ministry is run.
    My Sunday night service is now at 5:00pm.
    I’m not trying to be NEW or different than the OLD IFB churches.
    It’s just what works better for the ministry that God has given us.
    Stay Positive.
    Stay Cutting Edge
    Stay IFB
    Stay KJV
    Stay RV1960
    Stay focused on Jesus Christ and making HIM known!!!!!!!!
    Thanks again for the refreshing article!!!
    I love being an IFB.

  68. Ralph Stokes says:

    First, the scriptures tell us there is nothing new under the sun. So, a “new” movement is not new. Second, Brother Josh Teis, you state in this post ” original intent of the author ” when talking about the scriptures. Smokescreen: you’ve come up with another way to say the original autographs. (Which you don’t have, I don’t have, and don’t exist). But you know that. Thirdly, you post on your website, under beliefs, that the scriptures shall be interpreted according to their normal grammatical-historical meaning. That’s odd. God says to study to shew thyself approved unto God, rightly dividing the word of truth.
    Thirdly, on your website you state, concerning the Bible, The scr

  69. Ralph Stokes says:

    Sorry about that. A lot I don’t understand about computers. I must have hit a key that entered that partial message. If you can delete that second thirdly, do so please.

  70. Matt Baker says:

    Why is this not viral yet???

  71. JOSUE ORTIZ says:

    Josh, thank you. It is not only encouraging and refreshing, but after reading some of the replies, it proves how vitally important it is for the New Baptists to be Biblical and stand firmly in our position. Unity NEVER at the expense of senseless conformity, old-paths NEVER above Scripture, traditions NEVER at the expense of the Gospel. Again, thank you Josh!

  72. Anonymous says:

    Things That are the Same Are Not Different – The IFB, whether you call it new or old, remains one of the biggest hindrances to true Christianity.
    Josh, I believe you mean well and are doing some great things for people (have seen this up close and personally). However, until the veil of the IFB and other similar institutions and its hirelings is torn from a person’s spiritual life, they will never experience God the way He wants to be experienced.

    What has been refreshing for me to see is fellow PCC grads and many others either walking away, or the more common experience, excommunicated from the IFB. At that point, they are left without anything to hinder their growth and can finally develop a deep relationship with God.

    In time, you will see that this “New Independent Baptist” idea is nothing more than the “old paths” that others so sacredly guard, and will lead people into the same spiritual bondage as before.

  73. Eric Davis says:


    I wonder where you stand on separation around the KJV of the Bible. I see this as a preference, possibly a conviction, but certainly not a doctrinal matter. I think I would have enjoyed Idea Day East, but am apprehensive since I have been called an apostate by men that I have preached for and helped in the past, simply because I posted NKJV quotes on Facebook.


    Eric Davis

    • Josh Teis says:

      I do not separate over the KJV issue. To do so would mean that I could have no ministry with John R. Rice. For he clearly did not have a TR position and opposed KJV Onlyism. So – I would have to say – I wold not make it an issue of separation.

  74. Eddie Liebi says:


    Love the article and it is true, I have noticed a more loving generation of men coming up in our Independent Baptist churches, that are still holding to the truth. I am a missionary head to Germany, just starting out on deputation. Its a long and tedious process trying to raise the funds to be able to start a church. The average time span for a missionary to raise support is about 5 years, and that is fine to me if that is how long God wants me to take. There is just some things that puzzle me as I make phone calls and to do my best in being diligent in raising the support is that we as independent baptist are too uncooperative, we seem to shut off from others. I know that we have independent in our name, meaning we have no authority over us except for Jesus being the head of the church. But we have some many secs within, that every pastor I talk to grills me, and that isn’t what bothers me I like that he is making sure I am doctrinally sound. But what worries me is when I look at the southern baptist, and I know someone is going to comment about me mentioning this, they put out more missionaries than we do because they work together. Now I don’t agree with how they completely do it, but you would think that we can actually work together for the spreading of the Gospel, instead of worrying about what the other Independent baptist church is doing, and if they are doing better than me that, that is down the street. I have been under a pastor that was so upset when another Independent Baptist Church was started in the same town of 40k people. To me that seems a little selfish and he should have been trying to work together to see souls saved.

  75. Dude, keep on walking after Christ, and hang what men have to say. You will lose many friends because of it, but Christ meant what He said about being a disciple involving a cross.
    Four years ago, as an IFBer, I saw that the emperor had no clothes, and led our church into the SBC. My only regret? That I didn’t do it the first year of being a pastor.
    Four years later, I have had to find new friends, new mentors, even some new family, but Christ has never been more real than when you abandon all to just follow Him.
    I am for you and pray that you see the light and make the final move to the SBC?
    Have a great day.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thanks Stephen. I’ve actually found the opposite to be true for some reason. It’s amazing to me how many friends I’ve found through openly speaking about these issues in our movement. I know this has not been everyone’s experience but I’m thankful it has been mine. I truly feel there is a major shift coming in the years to come. Excited to be part of it. (BTW – Anonymous’ comment below made me smile) Have a great day my friend.

  76. Here are a few things that I loved from your article:
    The emphasis on Holy Spirit wrought change as opposed to forced conformity.
    The emphasis on proper exegesis rather than vilifying topical or expository preaching (in the last year I have read comments from leaders saying that if you don’t exclusively do expository preaching then you are not preaching the Bible, and from those on the other end that if you do expository preaching then you are taking the easy way out).
    Freedom from the fear of man!
    Financial accountability, there is no excuse here.
    The emphasis on a bright future.
    Grace and respect towards dissenters.
    THIS awesome comment that wasn’t even in the article! “What is inappropriate is to label someone a legalist simply because they are more conservative or a liberal simply because they are more contemporary.”

    Some thoughts:
    Not that you said otherwise, but… I hope that the emphasis on unity is centered on Christ’s glory through Christian love, sound doctrine and reaching the world. I hope that in my life none of these are sacrificed at the expense of one of the others.
    This was the first time I remember hearing/reading an independent Baptist refer to independent Baptists as a denomination. I don’t share that opinion.
    Not that you said otherwise, but… I believe we should be vigilant about what we read and from whom. I appreciate the caution of filtering new thoughts with the Bible, but I think that there are plenty of books and authors worth avoiding Proverbs 19:27.

    Thanks for the great thought-provoking article. Hope to meet you and talk someday. The idea day sounds awesome. God bless you.

    Kyle Sheridan, 28
    Church planter in Chilean Patagonia

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thanks Kyle. I agree that Independent Baptists are not a denomination is the strictest sense of the term. But we do function as a denomination regarding shared institutions and thousands of missionaries. I hope this clarifies my thoughts on the matter. Thanks for sharing.

  77. Seth Alcorn says:

    Thanks for the article Josh. Wholeheartedly agree. I was talking with a friend of mine the other day and he said it is strange to find young Independent Baptists that are not looking at things like Biblical authority, the centrality of the Gospel or overemphasis on standards etc. with more clarity than the past generation. One group I am concerned for is our missionary friends who feel as though they have to live up to the “standards” of the past generation or lose support. As pastor’s I don’t think we have to deal with this as much. Maybe in your next article you could consider this. Some of the fondest memories I have were made in Vegas as a summer missionary in 2004. May God bless you my friend.

    • Bro Seth, I worried about what you just said. You said basically “us young guys know better than the older men”. I love you man but do you now see anything wrong with that?

      • Seth Alcorn says:


        Why would I back away from anything that I said above? For the last several decades the IFB movement has been plagued by shallow preaching, a lack of Biblical authority, an overemphasis on external standards, dictatorial leadership, shallow worship and an exclusive spirit to name a few. Who is responsible for such errors being perpetuated as if they were the oracles of God? It is the older leaders of fundamentalism. I do not know everything (far from it) nor does anyone that Josh explained in this Independent Baptist Awakening. However, I refuse adamantly to follow a man who does not use the Bible as His sole authority for faith and practice no matter how old he is. Where would we be had not a young Martin Luther challenged the establishment of his day or if Jim Elliot would have listen to the “older” men of his day who advised him to get a church in the states? In those two cases the world would not have had the spiritual awakening it did during the days of the Reformation by the light of the Gospel and a generation would not have been influenced by Elliot to give their lives to Christ for missions.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Hey Seth. I agree this is a problem that needs to be addressed in the years ahead. I hurt for missionaries who have to toe a preference line to appease Western churches. Sadly, this can have adverse effects on the actual mission work in the field. For the missionary who chooses to contextualize to his culture (as taught by the apostle paul) he runs the risk of losing support. This is truly heartbreaking. To hamstring a missionary is such a way is truly sad.

  78. Eric Davis says:


    I think that my comment may have been lost in the massive response to this post. Over the last five years, by the grace of God, I have led our church out of legalism and controlism. We have adopted an accountability model of leadership. We recently changed our music and our dress, (slippery slope to a Biblical position). However, all of that said, when we changed our translation, I was called out as an apostate by friends and men whom I had done nothing but love and help… is this New Independent Baptist one that finally sheds the false doctrine of King James onlyism? That recognizes that Independent Baptists have no corner on the truth and the gospel of Jesus Christ? Would I be welcome at Idea Day? I look forward to reading your response.

    Bless God, Bless Others Be the Blessing!

    Eric Davis

    • Hey man, how are you over there in NH? Do you remember me from the network that Tom Messer and Greg Peters had?

      • Eric Davis says:

        I do, good to hear from you. We are doing well over here, how are you? Did you make it to that idea day?

        • We’re doing well too. Interesting to see how it seems that you and I have followed a similar path. We too have changed our polity to be more accountable. Unfortunately I was not able to go down for Idea Day. I did send my youth pastor. He thoroughly enjoyed it. Good to see your thoughts on here.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Sorry is took me so long to respond. Had to actually get back to pastoring and preparing sermons. 🙂

      Simply stated – you are welcome at Idea Day. I think separation over the KJV issue is not Biblical. Nor is it historically Independent Baptist to do so.

      For an Independent Baptist who chooses to separate over this issue would also have to admit they would not invite John R. Rice into their pulpit. For he clearly did not have a TR position and opposed KJV Onlyism. So – I would have to say – I would not make it an issue of separation.

  79. Josh,

    Thanks for writing this blog. I was a few years behind you at college so I know that you don’t know me. I’ve too wrestled with many of the crazy, off-the-wall things that have taken place within our movement. I’ve wrestled with whether to stay in the movement. I’ve stayed in because I know that God isn’t done with our movement.

    I agree with your assessment of the “new” independent baptists. However, I believe that we’re not “new” but that we’re actually returning to what historically the fundamentalists were. We agree on fundamental doctrines, the rest is left up to individual soul liberty as we stand accountable to God. We are zealous for the Word and sound doctrine, not preferences (sola scriptura). We love (and I’m so glad that you made this a major point of your article) expository preaching. We love associating with any person who preaches this way, whether they are IFB or not. I believe that what we are seeing is a return to a theology that makes God big and makes us small, and is overwhelmed by a deep sense of gratitude for His amazing grace.

    Thanks again for your blog! God bless!

    • Josh Teis says:

      Stephen – I think you have stated it in the best way possible. You are correct. This is not NEW. This is a returning to what Independent Baptists truly were before 1980. (What some consider the watershed year for the IFB)

      • Not sure that comparisons to prior 1980 and other earlier times is a vallid comparison as many of the debated issues on this blog either didn’t exist or if they did they weren’t in wide use or even known about. For instance, Christian Rock music attmitedly ties into this discussion in one form or another and yet, while maybe some woud say this was born in the late sixties to early seventies (read Wikipedia for example) the modern day movement had not really gained it’s popularity, philosophy, structure, and marketing untill the late 70s even into the 80s. IFB churches didn’t really start to deal with this issue one way way or another in large part untill that time and later. Might be a little apples to oranges comparison going on not sure.

  80. Craig lang says:

    I never heard of Bro. Josh before reading this article but I really enjoyed it. I pastor a small church in the mountains of New Mexico our church started a youth camp and ministers to deaf, inner city and native Americans. I am a second generation IFB pastor. My father has been pastoring and still is going on sixty years. He is one of the Godliest men I know. When he started there was no politics not like it is today within IFB and thankfully he had taught me to not get involved with them. Sadly I am not involved with them but they do effect me. The ” old school ” preachers are some of the greatest men if God I know. Of course in every generation you have your good and Bad. Pondering your post I believe church politics and the separation of good churches and people by petty differences not doctrinal but preference has done a lot of damage to our movement. My father said it was not there in his generation but pastors worked together to further the Gospel. I believe a lot of the politics came into play with the establishment of Bible colleges. I started full time ministry when I was 18 and have been serving now for 18 years. When I started calling churches for meetings as I am a full time pastor but also a full time missionary to the camp ministry. The church does not pay me or the camp as they cannot afford to. The first thing I was always asked was what college did I go to. If they did not like the answer I was politely and sometimes not so dismissed. They were not interested in my ministry or my walk with the Lord but more concerned about my college or more so the man running the college. More so than ever are people saying I am Paul or apaulos. Today the IFB churches are divided by the colleges they support. It has almost become like denominations within the IFB. I am thankful for some of the newe colleges within the past twenty years that are not this way but focus on not lifting there name but the name of Christ. Politics can make a pastor feel like they do not belong and to some they live for politics. In my father’s early days as a pastor it was truelly about What would Jesus do?, and not about what would this pastor do or that college. We need to get back to being more concerned about pleasing God then men. I believe out generation is fed up with following men or colleges and wants to get back to the refreshing way of following Christ. For some I am too conservative to others too liberal , but my only concern is what does God think. I live in a town of two hundred I will never be a big name preacher to men but as long as I give my all to the Lord I will be somebody to Him. In the end that is all that truelly matters. As a whole we need to get back to what the Bible says and not men, we need to get back to being part of the Church of Christ and not a college. We need to seek Gods approval and not mans. In the end the only thing that matters is our relationship to God and not man. I think the new IFB pastors are really just getting back to what original ones started when they were tired of the politics of the movement they came out of.

  81. Corey Seulean says:

    Jude 1:3 “Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.”

    The faith over which we should contend is basically what it takes for a lost person to get saved (the common salvation). I was taught at HAC and FBC Hammond by Dr. Jack Hyles that this is all over which we should contend.

    1Timothy 3:16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.

    a. Virgin Birth
    b. Sinless Life
    c. Vicarious Death
    d. Bodily Resurrection
    e. Blood Atonement
    f. Eminent Return

    2Timothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
    17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

    Psalm 12:6 The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.
    7 Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.

    Luke 4:4 And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.

    a. Originally Inspired
    b. Perpetually Preserved

    The King James Bible is the preserved Word of God in the English speaking language.

    Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
    9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.

    John 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

    Romans 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
    10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
    13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

    a. All have sinned
    b. Penalty for sin is death
    c. Christ paid in full the price for sin
    d. Receive the Saviour by faith

    Man has free will. God has not predetermined anyone to go to Hell.

    1Timothy 3:15 But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.

    Matthew 16:18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

    The local New Testament Church.

    Matthew 28:18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
    19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
    20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

    1Corinthians 1:17 ¶ For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.
    18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.
    19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.
    20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?
    21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.

    a. Soul Winning & Discipleship
    b. Old Fashioned Bible Preaching

    Acts 1:4 And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me.
    5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
    6 ¶ When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?
    7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.
    8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

    a. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit
    b. The Fullness of the Holy Spirit

    These are the things over which I will contend. Other than that, I will give way to personal liberty.

    I have chosen to look to the great men and follow their ways as admonished in the Scriptures.

    Jeremiah 5:5 I will get me unto the great men, and will speak unto them; for they have known the way of the LORD, and the judgment of their God: but these have altogether broken the yoke, and burst the bonds.

    I will look to keep the way “once delivered unto the saints” as stated in Jude 1:3

    Jeremiah 6:16 Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.

    I am for anyone who holds tightly to the faith. They do not have to look like me, talk like me, dress like me or do anything like me. Jesus is the standard not me.

    However, I will not align with those who depart from the faith as the Scripture foretells.

    1Timothy 4:1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
    2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;

    May God bless all who keep the faith.

    • Matt Baker says:

      I’m not sure who you’re pointing at here, but I have yet to see one person on here commenting who has left the faith. Some have left certain traditions behind, traditions that have no bearing on the essential doctrines of our faith, but I haven’t seen anyone on here forsake the faith yet.

      • Corey Seulean says:

        Just simply stating a position. As long as the faith is kept I have no problem with those who do things differently than me. However, I see that many who have gone down the road of change do depart from the faith.

        I thought I saw some who talked down of the King James Bible in their remarks and have stated that they endorse other versions. If one changes to a “Bible” that is not the preserved Word of God then I think that is a part of what it means to depart from the faith.

        Just one example.

        We should be careful to not cast off all that was handed down to us because of some who do not represent the faith well. If it is a part of the faith we should never let it go no matter how the world is changing.

        • Matt Baker says:

          I’m not here to have the “version debate” with you. While I use more than the King James Bible in my studies, I can assure you that I haven’t left “the faith”, meaning the essential doctrines that make up what we believe. I’m not going to part with someone who prefers something different. The body of Christ is very diverse, and we should respect it as such. I appreciate your zeal and your authenticity. Stay strong for the Kingdom!

  82. If you guys really held to the KJV 1611, you’d still have the apocrypha. When someone tells me they are KJVO, I just walk away. There is no using logic with them.

    • Corey Seulean says:

      Just asking, not trying to be sarcastic. Where are the preserved Words of God today?

      • Better question, “Can anyone be saved using a Bible that is not a King James translation!”

        • Forgive the wrong ending punctuation.

        • Corey Seulean says:

          Jesus saves not the Bible version one uses.

        • Corey Seulean says:


          I want to have a Bible that is accurate and preserved by God. Nothing missing, added or altered. Just preserved by God.

          Do you believe that there is a preserved Word of God today?

          • Absolutely. And as languages morph over time, I am thankful that God keeps His Word.
            For example, I’m glad that I don’t have to read the Genva Bible. It too was in the English language, but the language morphed with the marching of time. I imagine that their were many just like you decrying the “new”bible (KJV). Ah, but God keeps His Word to all generations!
            My 11 year old was so grateful when I handed him a Holman, and he said, ” I can finally understand what you’re saying!”
            I have the Word of God, and love it.

          • Corey Seulean says:

            Are there any modern English versions that are not preserved by God? Is the King James Bible still preserved by God? If there are verses missing or words drastically altered between the versions, which one is correct?

            One of the main problems I have seen is a pastor preaching from a half a dozen different versions of the Bible in the same sermon and the congregation using literally many other versions as they try to follow along in the sermon. All this points to confusion in my mind. Who determines which version is more accurate for each verse? Should we have multiple versions of the Bible to be able to accurately know what God has said or is there one version on which we can depend to give us God’s Word in it’s entirety?

            What line do you say you will not cross when accepting modern English versions of the Bible?

          • I just preach from the ESV and call it a day. Our children’s programs use the Holman as we are Southern Baptist 🙂
            My sweet grandmother just turned 94. She was raised in a preacher’s home. She was the wife to a pastor, and she loves the Lord. When all the brew ha ha started happening over versions, she took it upon herself to read each one, and her conclusion? They all have the correct doctrines in them.
            (Of course, I am not speaking of NWT, or other religions bibles.)
            I bow out of this convo now, as we aren’t going to change each other’s minds. I simply came to see the lack of logic across the board for this argument.

          • Corey Seulean says:

            I am sorry you feel I have a lack of logic. I was not being unkind in how I worded my questions. You seemed to avoid answering the questions. I feel I was using logic. I just don’t see the logic in your responses. I guess it is best to not continue the conversation if there is no resolution. God bless.

          • Josh Teis says:

            Corey & Stephen,

            Thank you for having such a kind and reasoned discussion on this thread. It’s refreshing to watch 2 disagree but stay Christ-like in their responses. Some forget when they use inflammatory language that they not only undermine their arguments but they also show a poor testimony of the Christian faith. I am above all a pastor in Las Vegas and there will be many unconverted and newly saved Christians who read through these comments. Your discussion is exemplary and I appreciate it.

        • Jamie Baldwin says:

          Yes just like you can receive Christ as your Savior without going to church but the KJV is still the true inspired preseved and Inerrant WORD OF GOD

  83. Jonathan Roberson says:

    Pastor Teis and all who read this blog: I am what is considered a young preacher I am 23 years old and serve full time in an Independent Baptist Church. I graduated from a Fundamental Baptist College and I must admit there were some things that were taught there that were simply preference. However, one thing that I settled in my own heart and mind is that I am not a “New Independent Baptist” from this young preacher’s perspective your movement is nothing more than a repackaged emergent church. I want no part of that! I have surrendered my life to serving the Lord, and winning the lost. However, I will not compromise Bible standards and holiness. The Word of God says in II Corinthians 6:17, “Come out from among them and be ye separate saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.” We are to be different from the world we have been called upon to reach! I happen to believe that you can win the lost and live holy at the same time. We know the old time Independent Baptist have stood the test of time, I am concerned where the “New Independent Baptist” will be in 40 years! Thanks for allowing me to comment, just the thoughts of a young preacher who has given his life to serve Jesus!

    • Rudy says:

      If you’re the Jonathon Roberson from central Illinois, doesn’t your church use worldly country western music in your services? How does “come out from among them and be separate” apply there? Be careful, young brother, that you don’t start you`re Bible study with what you already believe. Start with what the Bible actually says to determine what you believe…no matter how painful it may be.

      For example: is a church unholy if they don’t have a Wednesday night service? What Scripture does God give us to answer this question? What if they pray on Sunday afternoons between AM & PM services? Then is it ok to not meet midweek? Staring with and using only the Bible it’s difficult to give a universally a pliable answer.

      What activity of the new IBs is unholy, specifically? Start with the Bible – not your comfort zone or experience.

      Sadly the Catholic Church has stood the test of time, too. Time isn’t always the best judge.

      PS – Based on Psalm 150, I think God appreciates your church’s worship style. 🙂

      • Rudy says:


      • Jamie Baldwin says:

        The Bible says that when the church doors are opened that we are to be there. We are not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together…. and so much the more as ye see the day approaching. So are you an unholy church? No but you aren’t following scripture. Doesn’t matter what day during the week just as long as you are there.

      • Jamie Baldwin says:

        Yes just like you can receive Christ as your Savior without going to church but the KJV is still the true inspired preseved and Inerrant WORD OF GOD

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thanks Jonathan for your thoughts. I admire your passion and look forward to watching your ministry and seeing the journey that the Lord has planned for you. If you ever need anything at all – reach out and contact me. I’d love to help.

  84. Micah McCurry says:

    This repackaging of New Evangelicalism under the brand name of New Independant Baptists gave me pause for a moment. I am a 23 year old youth/assistant pastor in an independent baptist church and I am firmly convinced that we need to leave the ancient landmarks where they are. I am saddened when churches take the name “Baptist” off of their sign, but I am grieved when people try to rebrand what I am so proud to be.

    Am I a Biblicist first? Yes. A Christian because I strive to be like Him? Yes. But I am also a Baptist. This call for a separation and delineation by the tags of Old and New feel like just another guise by which the tactics of inclusivity and harmony with the world can be bandied about without raising the alarm for unsuspecting Baptists.

    If methods didn’t matter then why was Uzzah struck down? If we can just serve God the way it seems right in our own eyes than why was strange fire such an issue? If God truly didn’t care, why was Eli judged for the conduct of his vile sons? We can quibble about the exact methods God wants us to use all day long, but to act as if God will bless any method as long as we attach His name is foolishness.

    To each their own, but I just want to let it be known that I am a young Independent Baptist that isn’t buying what this article is selling. I don’t drink Kool-Aid whether it is mixed by old men or young men, but I definitely don’t want a taste of the snake oil this article is trying to get me to buy.

    • I have two questions for you.

      1.) Which “ancient landmarks” do you believe that Josh wants to move?

      2.) Which methods does Josh cite that you believe that are in violation of Scripture or would cause you to infer that Josh believes that “God will bless any method as long as we attach His name?”

      You use Uzzah and Eli as proofs that methods matter. I would agree 100% that methods matter and that they must absolutely be in harmony with Scripture. However, the reason that Uzza and Eli were judged is because the were in direct violation of God’s Word. I don’t see anything even close to that in this article.

    • I don’t believe you know what a true new evangelical is nor have you ever truly met one (there is a difference between one and an evangelical). If you knew the difference you would know that Josh (and what he had said here) is not new evangelical.

    • Lynn says:

      I turned 35 this year. Grew up under Jack Hyles’ ministry. When I look back at “me at 23” I realize I didn’t know anything other than what I had been told by that one brand of IFB-ers. The past 12 years have been confusing, humbling, and eye opening, but I am so thankful for the journey. I still belong to an IFB church that uses even more conservative/ high church sounding music than Hammond did, is KJV only, and is wonderfully evangelistic. I admire your strong stance, but can’t take it too seriously knowing you are very early on in your journey. I wish you an open heart as you lead the next generation.

  85. I’ve never smoked, drank or did drugs. I don’t care for CCM or Christian rock or whatever you want to call it and yet I commented favorably on this page. In fact, by definition, I think I would be the epitome of a stereotypical Indy-Fundy. I have degrees from PCC & HAC, use the King James Bible and lived in Hammond for 4 years growing up. I don’t regret one second of any of those experiences. I would remind people that this is about methods and not the Message. Don’t forget, at one time the bus ministry was a new method of outreach and the traditional, cherished hymns we sing now were frowned upon because they weren’t anthems… We need a Biblical perspective on our Christianity and not a cliche’ #oldpaths perspective that says if it isn’t from the 1950’s it isn’t Biblical.

  86. Josh Miller says:

    What a refreshing article! Thank you for articulating and positing solid truths upon which any Bible-believer should applaud. All seven points are spot on and Biblical. As a 43 year old pastor, I believe I have a unique vantage point to many of the items stated here. For stating some of the following, I will be attacked, but “the fear of man bringeth a snare” so here goes.

    I grew up under a pastor who graduated from Peter Ruckman’s college in Florida (from that I learned a love for the Word of God). I attended Pensacola Christian College for five years, met my wife, and graduated with a Computer Science degree (from PCC, I learned many godly principles, chiefly among them how to have a daily time with God). I surrendered to the ministry at a Pastor’s School and attended Hyles-Anderson college and earned my Master’s in Pastoral Theology (from Hyles-Anderson I learned and gained a passion for souls).

    The reason I liked this article to such a great degree is that underlying the article is an attack on the worst of sins in all of us and the sin that brought down Lucifer – pride. The reason I know this is because it is the one sin I have struggled with the most. And to be honest, the IFB movement only fueled that sin. Why is there so much contention in much of the IFB movement today? The Scripture plainly tells us the answer, “Only by pride cometh contention.”

    Sir, I am thrilled that you are obsessed with the Gospel instead of obsessed with what we as Baptists can do. It makes me giddy that you are committed to preaching the Bible correctly, not twisting a scripture to fit a pre-conceived idea. I’m so thankful to hear that you belong to a group of unified men who despise hyper-separatism instead of those who despise those unlike them. To hear of others also turned off by “denominational politics” is music to my soul. The fact that you are dedicated to fiscal accountability (there’s a word that is unknown in IFB circles) is just plain smart and humble. To be well read is not only wise, but a humble gesture realizing that there are other Christians who just might have some good thoughts about the Scripture also. And then to cast hope for the future bodes well.

    I have failed at so many of the above items over the past years. However, God in His grace, has been peeling away the layers of pride in my life. It has been an ugly process but I am thrilled to see what is taking place because of it.

    Please continue to take the high road! Don’t let the naysayers discourage you. Continue to hold forth the Word of God, continue to reach souls, and continue to love people!

    God bless you, Pastor Josh!

    • Mark Holmes says:

      I always knew you were a liberal, Josh Miller, from our days in Division 8! So glad to see you’re still pastoring and that God continues to work in your life. I hope our paths cross again soon so I can catch up with you and Teya and introduce you to my crew. Looking forward to reading through your blog.

      • Josh MIller says:

        Hey Mark! Good to hear from you, you old rascal! I’ve been thrilled to hear of the people you have been reaching over the past years there in Africa. I do hope we can cross paths in the future. As far as my blog, I have been writing thoughts similar to what the author posted here over the past few years as I have been observing the state of IFB Bible-believing churches. However, I am thrilled to see a group of people starting to focus on what is important. May God bless your family as you serve Him

    • Josh, I too graduated from PCC with a Computer Science degree and then went on to Hyles-Anderson and earned my Masters in Pastoral Theology… 2003, 2005.

      • Josh Miller says:

        Daniel – wow! Didn’t know of another that took a similar path to mine. Glad to know you through this post! How are things there in Rensselaer?

        • Going well. I’ve been Pastor here 11 years now. We are in a small town and we are growing slowly but surely. That is certainly frustrating from a personal expectation stand point but God works in his time and I am content with that.

  87. David Talley says:

    Good article. Very encouraging.

  88. Bill says:

    Pastor Teis,
    Hello, my name is Bill. I have a question for you. You stated, “The new Independent Baptist is less enamored with uniformity and more dedicated to unity.” Will you please define what you mean when you say “uniformity”? And, is this philosophy embraced by the “new IFB”? Thank you.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Yes Bill. Thank you for asking. Uniformity can be understood by demanding that every church use the same methods that the Bible does not clearly teach ought be used. So, if a an emergent church leader demanded that everyone must wear skinny jeans and a lumberjack shirt to do ministry – He would be overly concerned with uniformity. If a another ministry leader demands that everyone must wear a suit and tie to do ministry – He to would be overly concerned with uniformity. Some go as far as to separate over these preferential issues – this is a lack of unity. Some go even further and attempt to twist Scripture to make a Biblical issue where there is no biblical issue to be made. Demanding conformity to produce uniformity where the Scripture is vague is a lack of Unity. I hope this helps.

      • Just curious Bro. Josh, to understand a little better what you are talking about. How does one INDEPENDENT Baptist Church demand another INDEPENDENT Baptist church to have a particular type of method or standard. By God’s grace I’m just trying to work hard here where God has put me and so consequently I don’t get out much to see other Independent Baptist Church but I wasn’t aware of any Independent Baptist Church that demands another church to do anything. I’m not even understanding how that would be possible. Just curious. Thanks for responding to these questions and comments, by the way.

        • bdub says:

          Branden, my opinion… your answer lies within some of the responses on here from missionaries… church to church pressures do exist… church to missionary pressures…. churches will not associate i.e. they will separate from other churches that do not hold their man derived standards… so demand no… not directly. my opinion. seen it happen.

          • BDUB. haven’t really chatted with you on here as of yet. Before I interact with another brother on here I try to read through their comments. I would first like to say, I’m so sorry for the bad experiences that you have had to either be victim to or an observer of. I should hope everyone on this blog would be in agreement with that. Interesting that you would comment on missionaries as that is one of my responsibilities as an assistant pastor is that I am the missions pastor. I guess what I would say about that is there are always going to be differences between churches, even among this new brand. Missions Boards and Missions Agency’s (at least the one’s that I am familiar with) all claim to be an arm of the local church. They can be in a little bit of a tough spot as they get candidates that come from all kinds of backgrounds (doctrine, standards, etc…) So what I have found many of those boards do (actually to help with unity) is that they have a set of guidelines. Those guidelines often include a variety of things… not so we can be mean spirited and SEPARATE from each other but actually to promote UNITY. The fact of the matter is that these missionaries are going to interact with many churches and other missionaries throughout their time of ministry. Those guidelines are there to help local churches find missionaries (and vise versa) that are similar to their ministry both philosophically and doctrinally. They are also there to help missionaries find missionaries that are similar to each other. Admittedly this isn’t a perfect science but I believe this to be the intent. I should hope that I wouldn’t be looked down upon for looking to partner with someone in ministry who is most in agreement with me and I with them (missionaries or staff). This goes back to one of the verses that I referenced in my post below from Amos 3:3 Can two walk together except they be agreed. Now I know at some point everyone has to agree to disagree on some things. Everyone has to do this just because we are human beings and human beings have differing opinions but if I am constantly having to agree to disagree with a ministry partner… it ends up making it difficult to function together. I suppose you might find a little of this in what happened with Paul and Barnabas over the issue of John Mark. Anyhow, the result is that churches in general try to find missionaries to support that are more like them. That doesn’t mean that I am out to put down, hurt, criticize, or even comment on the ministry of a brother who is not like me. This also doesn’t mean that their isn’t a variety of missionaries who we support that do not dot their t or cross their i just like us. Interestingly enough, there are fourof our supported missionaries that have commented favorably toward Josh’s blog that we support. I can assure you that we are not going to drop them because of that. It’s all about balance too. I could go to an extreme and say that I’m not going to take any missionary on that isn’t absolutely, no exceptions, just like me. We would have a very small international outreach then because their may not be a huge group like that. I might also add that we take a lot of missions trips. We want our people to have their eye affect their hearts. One of the reasons we want to support missionaries like us is so that it is not confusing for our people to show up at a church and find contradictory applications of Scripture… it’s just not helpful. You can say that dress is a non issue but everyone (even the most “liberal” (if for sake of illustration you will allow me to use that term) church has some line in dress, music and other “grey” areas as many like to put it. They may choose not to talk about it corporately or not to preach on it but in practice they actually draw some line within their own ministry. I could give an example (granted it might sound a little extreme or unrealistic) of where even those church wouldn’t “go there”. So, in our church, we feel there is nothing wrong with helping people make applications that are reasonable and balanced to the passages of Scripture that give commands but that don’t lay out all of the application for those commands. Interestingly enough, on that topic, it really shows the wisdom and timelessness of the Scriptures as certain modern day things didn’t even exist in that day. I personally feel the reason God left some of those passages to be open ended was to cover future applications of those principles in the centuries to come until He returns… Not because we aren’t supposed to make any application to them. So call it philosophical, call it preference, Call it separation (though I don’t fell like that accurately describes it in all situations). I prefer to call it practical but call it what you want. It is what we as a church have chosen to do. I might add that I find it interesting when some missionaries get upset, upon coming to join a board, about certain guidelines (this is also true for Christian Colleges) but my question is, why get upset and start throwing around terms of legalism? Why go out and start a new forum/website criticizing and making fun of them? Why not just graciously agree to disagree and then go find a board or agency that falls closer in line with who you are? I shouldn’t think anyone would fault them for that. At least they are practicing what is in their hear and not hypocrisy. I just might not choose to partner with them but hey, God bless their ministry! I’m not out to criticize them. Go win souls! Hope that all makes sense.

          • bdub says:

            Branden, thank you for your level headed response. i agree with you! … and if we could all (including myself…being truthful)… be that level headed.

            I heard a preacher say, and I paraphrase… “good men may disagree on the small things but doctrinally the agree with The Gospel”… If only that would be in practice across the board…

            when I had to leave my FIL’s church another pastor, that I trusted at the time, told me that the church I intended on going to “had no standards” and that’s a quote. After attending that church, and joining that church, an IFB church, and being there for over 10 years and raising my family there. I can truly say that pastor was wrong. What is true, is the pastor of my new church said and will say to any one “I will not preach that women wearing pants is a sin, it’s a personal choice, I have more important things to preach about, and people need more from God than whether or not women can wear pants”….and that’s paraphrase…. and I could list a dozen other things that the first pastor could say “that church has no standards”… but reality is… he doesn’t know what he’s talking about in the least and HE is missing out on the blessings of God from some of the best IFB churches around. To me these are the stupid things that keeps IFB’s from having unity among sister churches… just an opinion.

            Thank you again for your response.

        • In all Independent Baptist fellowships there is an unseen pressure to conform to the status quo of of the standards of that particular fellowship.

  89. Old grey bearded missionary says:

    Well, isn’t this special? I am sitting here on literally the other side of the world just shaking my head. I was directed here by another website so I could apparently read the apostasy contained in this blog…. wow, so, this is the new face of apostasy regarding the “old” new independent Baptists? Frankly, you Americans need to learn what cross cultural evangelism is and you need to flow up your old paths hashtag because it is simply preaching to your choir. If you continue to internalize you will continue to fall apart. The Gospel preaching church should have ALL levels of Christians in it and it should have ALL levels working together. I return to the USA as little as possible because it is getting harder and harder to visit museums on Sunday mornings posing as vibrant Gospel stations…so to speak. I read what Cory Seulean said and he is right, the position is the Gospel, not if you have screens or hymnbooks and sing gimme that old time religion and equate it to something completely American. Frankly, if these “young guns” are preaching the Gospel, baptizing them and teaching them to do whatsoever the Lord commanded, well, Praise the Lord and pass me another serving of that. I would put my name, but, being a missionary and subject to the backlash I would cause in my supporting churches, from both sides of this invisible aisle, I chose to be anonymous and a defend my bank account because this is not my war, just my chance to comment….

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thank you sir for your comment. I certainly appreciate your many years of service to the Lord and believe you to be very wise not to reveal your name in this thread. I can assure you that the future of our movement has great potential and will be thriving in the years to come. Do not be discouraged by a very vocal minority who are becoming more and more irrelevant in our movement. Many of them are passing off of the scene and those left behind will grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Savior. God bless you dear friend for your words of encouragement.

  90. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for sharing!! Those are my thoughts exactly!!

  91. Chelsea Reed says:

    Lastly, may I just say, Great Peace have they which love thy law and nothing shall offend them.” Psalms. If we would live this verse daily, we as Christians would have no fueds with one another.

  92. EXCELLENT…..


    “Soy optimista sobre el futuro del movimiento Bautista Independiente!

    Me emociono cuando me encuentro con la próxima generación de hombres que hoy están heredando los púlpitos de sus predecesores consumados.

    Me emociona ver a todos los jóvenes que están plantando iglesias y que comparte historias increíbles de la Gracia de Dios en su ministerio local.

    Me inspirtan aquellos Evangelistas jóvenes que se niegan a participar en la política denominacional.

    Me siento alentado por los misioneros jóvenes que decididamente no son etnocéntricos y que prefieren contextualizar el ministerio evangélico, como lo enseñó el Apóstol Pablo. [2]

    Estos son los nuevos bautistas independientes. Y ellos están…

    1 – Obsesionado con el Evangelio

    Romanos 1:16 no me avergüenzo del evangelio de Cristo, pues es el poder de Dios para salvación a todo aquel que cree.

    La gente no cambia, ya que empiezan a llegar a nuestra iglesia!

    Las personas cambian porque tienen una interacción sobrenatural con el Evangelio de Jesucristo.

    Ese es el poder que transforma el destino de una persona en cuanto ir al infierno o cielo. Ese es el poder que lleva la vida al espíritu que está muerto [por la multitud de delitos y pecado].

    Ese es el poder que se ajusta lentamente a un individuo en la imagen de Cristo.

    La predicación del Evangelio es lo que trae el verdadero cambio.

    Es por eso que nos enfurecemos [“This is why we bristle at preaching that….” en el original] por la predicación que minimiza el trabajo de Dios y maximiza el esfuerzo del hombre.

    Nosontros entendemos que el verdadero cambio sólo llegará a la vida de un individuo en la medida que él “crezca en la Gracia y en el conocimiento más profundo de Jesús” [3] no cuando se le somete a una lista artificial de santidad según las preferencias personales.

    2 – Comprometidos con la predicación de la Biblia

    II Timoteo 4: 2 Predica la palabra; que instes a tiempo y fuera de tiempo; redarguye, reprende, exhorta con toda paciencia y doctrina.

    Nos encanta la predicación expositiva. Deseamos exponer lo que la Biblia realmente está diciendo!

    Nosotros detestamos la práctica de torcer alguna parte de la Escritura para adaptarla [ot. adaptarnos] a una idea preconcebida.

    Algunos de nosotros exponemos la Escritura a través de la predicación de forma secuencial a través de Libros enteros de la Biblia, teniendo mucho cuidado para [poder] entender cada pasaje en su contexto adecuado.

    Otros prefieren un enfoque sistemático que permite [crear] una serie de sermones que se ocupa de manera integral de un tema o doctrina específica.

    En ambos casos, el nuevo Bautista independiente toma gran interés en ser fiel a la intención original del Autor. Es por ello que rechazamos predicadores que continuamente malversan la misma Palabra de Dios. En el mejor [caso], de estos hombres, son ingenuos; en el peor [entonces]están prostituyendo la Palabra -a sabiendas [conscientes de lo que hacen]- con fines de beneficio [o lucro] personal.

    3 – Hombres de Unidad que desprecian el Hiper-separatismo

    Juan 13:35 En esto conocerán todos que sois mis discípulos, si tenéis amor los unos con los otros.

    Lamentablemente nuestro movimiento ha sido identificado por una apropiación indebida de un pasaje [4] acerca de la separación sin tener en cuenta muchos otros acerca de la unidad. [5]

    Estos son los hiper-separatistas. No sólo se separan de líderes piadosos fuera de nuestra denominación [sino que ]atacan activamente a [otros] miembros [igualmente] independientes.

    Esto ha llevado que nuestro movimiento se divida en bandos divididos [ot. disidentes entre ellos] con diversa influencia y tamaño.

    Cada grupo parece demandar la adhesión completa [del otro contrario y no sólo lo piden en cuanto a los fundamentos de la teología, sino también llegar a un acuerdo total [“complete”] en los temas de las Doctrinas generales [“secondary doctrinal issues” (*)]

    NT: no existen Doctrinas “secundarias” ► Fundamentales y Generales.

    Pero ellos van incluso más allá. También quieren uniformidad en lo que refiere a las convicciones personales y a las cuestiones preferenciales como son: estilo de adoración, orden o arreglo de los servicios, el diseño del edificio, y el atuendo en el púlpito y así cuestionar el status quo trae trae sospecha y expresar el desacuerdo trae [una] separación rápida.

    Sin embargo, esto está cambiando! [6] El nuevo Bautista Independiente está menos enamorado de la uniformidad y más dedicado a la unidad. La prueba de fuego para la comunión no tiene nada que ver con los pantalones vaqueros vs. lazos, himnos vs música contemporánea cristiana[Christian Contemporary Music], o la escuela dominical frente a pequeños grupos.

    Entendemos que el mundo se va al infierno [sin haber clamado por Salvación a nuestro Señor Jesús Cristo], y si vamos a llegar a ellos es tomano una amplia gama de iglesias doctrinalmente sanas que se van a ver muy diferentes entre sí. Esto no sólo es aceptable es preferible.

    4 – Abandonando la carreterar por Políticas denominacionales

    I Corintios 1: 12-13 … hay entre vosotros contiendas. Pero esto digo, que cada uno de vosotros dice: Yo soy de Pablo; y yo de Apolos; y yo de Cefas; y yo de Cristo. Está dividido Cristo?

    Uno de los grandes beneficios de ser Bautista Independiente se suponía que era la falta de control denominacional [por parte de terceros]

    Lamentablemente, nuestro movimiento no siempre ha sido capaz de vivir a la altura de esee ideal. Esto esdebido en parte a nuestra proclividad [q.d. estar inclinado, proclive, tender hacia…] hacia la práctica insana de [aplicar varios niveles de] separación: de segundo grado, tercero grado, y la separación de cuarto grado. [7]

    El miedo es una cosa terrible. El miedo conducirá a un hombre a decir lo que no cree que con el fin de complacer a un crítico.

    El miedo hará que un hombre sacrifique la transparencia en el altar de influencia.

    El miedo mantendrá tranquilo a un hombre cuando debería hablar, pero é llamará a esa conducta “discreción”.

    El miedo mantendrá un plantador de iglesias atado a un método denominacionalmente aprobado a pesar de que produce pocos resultados.

    En su lugar [una vez superado el miedo entonces], elegimos ser hombres quienes estamos más preocupados por la libertad de expresión y el diálogo abierto que contener [o retener] la influencia y las críticas agradables

    NT: Apreciaré poder leer otra versión de la traducción de este párrafo.

    Confía en mí. Entiendo la presión. Simplemente escribiendo este post estoy sincerándome a mí mismo [esperando] represalias.

    Ma he encontrado que decir la verdad es gratificante, expresar posición le dará libertar, y decir lo que realmente piensa es tremendamente liberador.

    La transparencia no parece limitar la influencia, parece [más buen] que la expande

    5 – Dedicado a Responsabilidad Presupuestaria

    II Timoteo 4: 5 Haga cumple tu ministerio.

    En el reciente ” Idea Day East ” de este día hubo muchas grandes verdades compartidas acerca de la vida y ministerio.

    Una de las grandes citas de la jornada fue, “si el personal pastoral tiene miedo de la responsabilidad financiera -. Hay un problema”

    Demasiadas iglesias han sido destruidas por un equipo pastoral dispuestos a adoptar políticas financieras estrictas. El gasto excesivo, malversación de fondos, e incluso robo descarado han llevado a muchas iglesias hacia abajo.

    Me parece que es un gran consuelo saber que esta tendencia se está desapareciendo en las iglesias bautistas independiente debido a la humildad de los pastores y la ardua labor de los diáconos. Si vamos a estár en el próximo siglo, entonces deberíamos eliminamos [por completo] a la tentación de la corrupción financiera.

    6 – Erudito

    II Timoteo 4: 5 Haga cumple tu ministerio.

    Ningun orgullo debe ser tomado en la ignorancia. Debemos leer principalmente las Escrituras porque ellas contienen lo que se necesita para una vida y ministerio.

    Pero también debemos ser así leer la Historia, la ciencia, la literatura, el liderazgo y la cultura pop.

    Una de las cosas que me gusta de los jóvenes bautistas independientes que Dios me está colocando en contacto es su disposición a crecer. No son esclavos de un “Índice Liborum Prohibitorum”, como fue instituido por la Iglesia Católica Romana. Leen en términos generales y siempre teniendo cuidado de filtrar los nuevos pensamientos [que aparecen] a través de la Palabra inspirada. Esto les permite llegar a una grupo o franza más ancha de personas dentro de su [propio] entorno cultural. También les permite desafiar a sus puntos de vista presupuestos.

    7 – Solamente comienza correctamente

    Hechos 1: 8 recibiréis poder, cuando el Espíritu Santo que vendrá sobre vosotros, y seréis testigos a mí tanto en Jerusalén como en toda Judea, en Samaria, y hasta lo último de la tierra.

    Nuestra generación es sólo el comienzo! El mundo se nos presenta con una necesidad desesperada de Jesucristo.

    Tenemos la solución a los problemas del mundo y estamos listos para revelarlo a Él [a nuestro Señor Jesús Cristo].

    Estamos dispuestos a hacer cualquier cosa que se necesite para complacer a nuestro Señor y que Su Reino avance.

    Ahora mismo estamos llegando al campo extranjero!

    Ahora mismo estamos lanzando a nuestra iglesia desde una central de cohetes [NT: Perdón por la traducción]

    Ahora mismo estamos heredando los púlpitos que ya están hechos!

    Ahora mismo estamos empezando a ver las posibilidades para la evangelización de todo el mundo!

    El futuro es brillante. Los próximos 40 años nos pertenecen a nosotros!

    ¿Seremos la generación que llevará de regreso a Cristo a las Naciones?

    Creo que puede ser – por sólo estamos empezando!

    Si has encontrado este artículo a ser interesante – compartirlo en las redes sociales!

    Me encantaría conocer tu opinión! Comenta abajo:

  93. Keith Williams says:

    I am a 30 year old Independent Fundamental Baptist Church Assistant/Youth Pastor. I graduated from an IFB college in 2004. I’ve grown up in the IFB movement since I was around 9. My parents, siblings, and in-laws all go to good old fashioned IFB Churches. I am not interested in commenting on what isn’t readily available in this article; I am, however, interested in stating that I am an OLD FASHIONED INDEPENDENT FUNDAMENTAL BAPTIST. Jeremiah told Israel, via the Lord, to ask for the old paths because that IS the good way (Jer. 6:16). Solomon wrote, in his God-given wisdom, to not remove the ancient landmarks (Prov. 22:28). The way I see it, through Scripture, that new isn’t always a good thing. When I see “New Independent Baptist” I think of David and Israel attempting to transport the Ark of the Covenant back to Israel on a “New Cart” (II Sam 6). While they’re desire to have God’s blessing and presence back in Israel was sincere, they’re method was incorrect and unholy. My goal, my desire in my period of human history isn’t to be a “New Independent Baptist”, but it’s to be part of a new generation walking in the OLD PATHS of the “Old Independent Baptist.” To search for something “New” or to try and label ourselves as “New” gives the implication that we aren’t content with what we have been given. Paul told Timothy that godliness WITH contentment is great gain (I Tim 6:6). Paul also told the Church at Philippi that no matter what state he was in, he had learned to be content (Phil 4:11). I am completely, totally, and unapologetically OLD FASHIONED INDEPENDENT BAPTIST, I am not looking for something “New!” Give me that Old Time Religion!

  94. I’d like to submit that many here are confused by the “new” and “old” labels.

    I believe that the Independent Fundamental Baptist movement started as a reaction to theological liberalism. This was a group of believers that would not associate with neo-orthodoxy and neo-evangelicalism. They considered themselves to be true Evangelicals. (Please, notice that there is a huge difference between neo-evangelicalism and evangelicalism. If you don’t know the difference then you need to read some more.)

    The beginnings of the movement were a godly reaction to corrupt theology and not dress standards, etc. However, over time, many churches and pastors (not all) began to blur the line between theological liberalism and certain standards. If a person did not hold certain personal standards they were labeled a liberal or a heretic. In the 1960’s and 1970’s this became extremely popular due to the rise of the rebellious, free-spirited, anti-authoritarian, hippie movement in America. Many churches reacted against that by tightening their personal standards. Unfortunately this caused many to believe that if someone looked clean-cut then they must be a good Christian. And unfortunately if someone didn’t look as clean-cut they were labeled as liberal. So, who was the standard in all this? What did clean-cut look like and who decided its definition? Most often it was the pastor of the church.

    For a few decades now, in many (not all) Independent Fundamental Baptist churches there has been an unbridled preaching of personal standards as gospel. Many so called “proof-texts” were pulled out of context to support ultra-conservative positions on some of the most trivial of things, e. g., can a pastor wear a colored shirt in the pulpit, is drinking Coca-cola a sin, can I wear wire-rimmed glasses, among other things). An important thing to remember is: “A text without a context is a pretext for a proof text.” Tragically this has been passed off as “good preaching.”

    Many in the movement, myself included, are tired of a shallow Christianity that has been labeled as the “Old Paths” and the “right way” of how to live for Christ. In the above article, Josh Teis is not advocating a departure from sound doctrine, conservatism, or soul-winning. He is however calling the IFB movement back to what made it great, i.e., gospel-centeredness, Scriptural preaching, unity, accountability, and scholarship. I cannot see why any follower of Christ wouldn’t want that.

  95. Matt Baker says:

    I’m encouraged to see the discussion here. There is not one thing unbiblical about the discussion each person has had here. If anything, this great article has done just that: it has caused people to think and to discuss. I’m a firm supporter of what Josh is talking about. If some disagree, and decide to keep calling folks who disagree “apostates”, and accuse them of “leaving the faith”, that will be between them and the Lord. But for now, enjoy the discussion. It doesn’t take raking someone over the coals to present a different idea. Josh has presented every point in its entirety from a purely Biblical perspective. There is liberty in the church to do things differently- Paul spoke about that. But one thing that cannot be said on here is that the article hasn’t been bathed in Biblical truth, which should be at the forefront of all of this, by way of importance. Perhaps the “New Independent Baptist” does what we should have been doing all along: staying firmly Biblical in our practice, thought, and teaching.

  96. Jon Booth says:

    There are some things that I would like to address Biblically, but because they already have been, I’ll not take the time to do so. I’m a 35 year old Independent Fundamental Baptist pastor. I’ve been pastoring the same church for just over nine years. I did not graduate from a Bible college. I do not pastor a large church. My influence for the most part is contained to the area God has called me to pastor in. I’ve grown up in the IFB movement my whole life. That’s all I’ve ever known. There are many things that I have seen growing up that I have a great dislike for, many of which has been mentioned. I’ve never seen or known any movement (SBC, Non-denom, Emergent, ect) to be perfect. I’ve also come to recognize many things that I’m thankful for. You see, it was in the IFB summer camps that I came to know the Lord as my Saviour and sensed the moving of God on my life to surrender to be a preacher of the Gospel. It was through the teachings of the scriptures by men of God that I learned Biblical holiness and Biblical separation. It was at the IFB conferences where God stirred my heart to live for Him. I’m not one to go pick a fight. I believe in being truly independent but not a recluse. Im not in anybodies back pocket and I’m nobodies boy but my Dad’s. Being an Independent Baptist means something. If we were truly independent or we wanted unity, then why write an article that brings more division and starts a new “camp”. These types of articles do not reinforce our independence but rather begins to lump people into “camps”. If your truly an Independent Baptist then why are there so many SBC guys commenting on this blog? I really don’t care what the SBC or Neos do until they poke their nose where it doesn’t belong. Why does your article reach into the hearts of the SBC, Non-denom, and Neo crowd, they want nothing to do with our crowd except when we send them the folks that were saved in our churches? They’ve wanted nothing to do with us until an article is written by one who claims to be an Independent Baptist that tickles their ear. The Lord does not build churches that look like a club and sounds like the rock concert from Saturday night. Those churches are built by men. Josh, if you’re going a direction, GO! Why do you see a need in trying to influence a “Movement” if your so “Independent”? Over the years I’ve gotten tired of guys trying to be the next “pope” of the Independent Baptist. Lead your church and let others lead their’s. Your article was as much about what “new” things you like as it was about old things you don’t like. If you don’t like it leave it and be what you are. But don’t try to say your an Independent Baptist when you look like a (SBC, Non-denom, Emergent) walk like (SBC, Non-denom, Emergent) and sound like(SBC, Non-denom, Emergent). I’m not interested in being like them or writing articles against them. I don’t want them influencing this generation of young Independent Baptist. So let me encourage you to go be what you are but Stay Out of My Pea PATCH! 2 Samuel 23:11-12

    • Jon Booth says:

      Steve, thanks for stooping so low as to make fun of my head that God created. I’m praying for you.

    • Josh Teis says:

      Hey Jon. Thank you for your well reasoned reply. You clearly have thought through your argument and desire to be as Biblical as possible. You also gave me much to think about. I will respond to one particular question because I think it is germane to the conversation as a whole. You asked why so many SBC and Non-denominational guys may be attracted to the original post. I think this might be because we are talking about principles that are much larger than the Independent Baptist Movement. As you know, throughout history there have been many gospel-loving, Bible-preaching, unifying, politics weary, accountable, well-read, optimistic Christians that have not been independent baptist. Regardless of denominational title – these folks can get along and work together as the early fundamentalists of the early 20th century did. Many of whom were Presbyterian, Methodist, and Baptist. I hope this helps.

    • Todd Laughbaum says:

      Amen Pastor Booth! When I first got saved you were a tough Evangelist, thank you for not compromising the heritage passed on to you!

    • Todd Laughbaum says:

      Meant young evangelist

  97. Dear Josh and other brothers and sisters in Christ reading this blog,
    I am a young independent Fundamental Baptist preacher. I’m responding to this blog because I want other young Independent Baptist Preachers to know that not all of us young guys are going the “New Independent Baptist” route. I’m not saying that their hasn’t been genuine issues or problems in certain segments of the IFB movement throughout it’s history (not surprised… it is a movement that involves fallible men as any movement or group). I am also aware that it is easy to REACT and PENDULUM swing to other imbalanced positions. I equally do not want to do this either. I certainly want to be kind and gracious in my response but I also know that this can still be accomplished by speaking “the truth in love”. Finally, I also will admit that I do not know Bro. Josh and therefore may misunderstand some of his statements so my comments are a result of just taking his thoughts and face value, admittedly not knowing all of his intentions behind what he is saying. I would like to comment on each one of your points and humbly offer a different perspective. As I began to read your blog (shared with me on Facebook by a friend) I started off thinking, “Hmm, this is good!” but it didn’t take long for that feeling to change to one of “Hmm, this may be dangerous”. Let me explain, I say dangerous because of how points of truth are so subtly woven with points of erros. This is not meant as a personal attack against you, Brother Josh, I don’t believe that we have personally ever met. You are welcome to do what you want in your church. Neither am I questioning your passion or sincerity but at the same time neither are a litmus for correct teaching. I hope these points can offer a discerning perspective to other IFB pastors/members (young or old) who might read this:
    1. Obsessed with the gospel… I admit that this might sound a little picky. I hope it would rather be perceived as discerning. I probably wouldn’t say too much about this first point except that as I read your other points I found the overtone of this blog to be one that is very pragmatic (as long as you are presenting the gospel… the type of method you use is not that important), I feel compelled to touch on this. As far as your choice of words, it has been my experience that “obsessions” often are attitudes that lead us to imbalanced positions. By God’s grace I want to be passionate about winning souls to Jesus Christ but I reject the pragmatic philosophy that “the ends justifies the means”. I don’t believe that “anything goes” so long as in the end someone gets saved. This has long been an argument used by Christian Rock groups to justify the use of worldly music in the church. I might also point out that this isn’t new IFB but rather this is in many ways old New Evangelicalism perhaps dressed in new garments and hitting closer to home. You recommend wide reading… well, here are some great books to study out the problem of new evangelicalism. The Tragedy of compromise by Ernest D. Pickering. Be Ye Holy by Fred Moritz. Contending For The Faith also by Fred Moritz… to name a few. Seems like we have an issue of “when you don’t learn from history… you are doomed to repeat it.” We millennials would do well to go back and study the battles that good men have already had to fight in our churches and learn from some grey headed pastors who have finished their course well.

    2. Committed to Preaching the Gospel…By God’s grace I am committed to preaching the Bible…I too reject the preaching of a few pastors who picked a verse, read it, and who went on to espouse their own opinions and philosophies. I also love expository preaching (though, while it is my favorite method of preaching is not the only method of preaching). I believe in studying the context of Scripture and allowing Scripture to be it’s own commentary. Having said all of that here is a word of warning concerning all of the thematic preaching that is popular in our churches. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against having themes in your church. We have them in ours and have preaching centered around a theme. Nonetheless, I also have heard a fair share of “new IFB” pastors who are so intent on having a cool theme that they too stretch the Bible to fit in with their cool, catchy, attractive them. I think the term you used was “prostituting” the Bible. Well this can happen in whatever movement you want to hang out with. So lets guard against the beam as we point out the motes. Ultimately what alarms me though, is a movement that is afraid to make application to truth. Heaven forbid that I should go beyond simply presenting the truth of Romans 12:2 and offer an application to dress or music because now I am controlling, legalistic, fear-mongering, and holier than thou. You guys have your own set of fears that you have set up and woe to the “new IFB” pastor who would dare to offer practical applications to certain passages. Your fear has now become that you might get labeled as legalistic. Doesn’t sound so “liberating” to me. Still influenced by what other men think about your preaching. By God’s grace I want to preach the Bible… “the whole counsel” and not just the passages that are convenient for my point of view. I want to preach “the whole counsel” and not just want is popular or deemed “relevant” for cultural ethnic… you fill in the blank modern church buzz word. I wonder how many messages you will find on 2 Corintians 6:17 “Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,” in these “new IFB” churches. I wonder how many messages you will find on Rom 12:2 “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” I wonder how many messages on Eze 22:26 Her priests have violated my law, and have profaned mine holy things: they have put no difference between the holy and profane, neither have they shewed difference between the unclean and the clean, and have hid their eyes from my sabbaths, and I am profaned among them. or Eze_44:23 And they shall teach my people the difference between the holy and profane, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean. How do you get up after rocking for Jesus and preach on these passages? Not being sarcastic… I’m genuinely asking. Which leads us to our next point on separation…

    3. Men of Unity who Despise Hyper-Separatism… Let me start off by saying that while I believe in biblical separation, I also enjoy fellowship with a very large group of people that are committed to live by biblical principles. Let me also say that I reject any pastor or church, IFB or not who is mean spirited or controlled by fleshly unspiritual attitudes. This does not mean that I have to react and pendulum swing away from these few individuals to a position where I throw separation out the window all together. I am not interested in being the police man of fundamentalism. I’m just a pastor trying to love our flock and reach lost folks. You quote John 13:35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. Great verse but essentially you are trying to equate unity with love. Often these two things go together in the scripture but sometimes they do not. Let’s remember that love is doing right by someone. Love is not staying quiet when someone is in error for the sake of “unity”. This is why we are commanded to “contend for the faith”. Love may even compel me to separate from someone. This is what church discipline is about (of course with the hope that the erring Christian will repent). Love may compel me to disagree with someone and graciously voice that disagreement but my disagreement doesn’t mean that I don’t love that brother in Christ it actually proves my love. Pro 27:6 Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful. I can also honestly say that I love the pastor who wrote this article though I may disagree with a large portion of what he has written here. Bro. Josh, you seem to be saying that people who separate based on “personal convictions” are hyper separatists but I would ask you where those personal convictions come from and who has impressed those convictions upon the heart. For me, my personal convictions are based on Bible principles…principles that the Holy Spirit has “convicted” my heart about. Now, considering the fact that He is the author of unity, (Eph_4:3 Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.) I have no choice but to separate from those who reject the Bible Principles about which He has placed conviction upon my heart. There is no doubt that God wants unity but only unity that is based on purity. I think you would agree with the statement that doctrine ought to be what divides us from others but I would disagree with you that there are a limited number of “fundamental” doctrines that are the only important doctrines that should produce separation. I’m sure that you are familiar with the fact that the Greek word for doctrine is doxa which means teaching. I reject the idea of secondary doctrines. Everything the Bible teaches is true and important and worth defending. Doctrine is not limited to some man’s systematic listing of certain teachings from the Bible. Doctrine is “the whole counsel of God”. I’m not saying that you separate from everyone that doesn’t have a Bible conviction that you have. You ought to attempt to teach that person the Bible principle. I’m not saying that you don’t give people time and room to grow, we ought to be patient and longsuffering as the Lord is with us. But when I run into someone who is set against a Bible based conviction in my life and who actively “preach” against it, I think that calls for separation. I’m not talking about separating from someone because of the color of our church carpet but lets take several of the issues you brought up that you don’t believe call for separation. If in your statement “jeans vs. ties” you mean to express that we can come to God in worship with a casual attitude and attire then that contradicts biblical principles concerning our attitude in worship. God did not ask Moses to take off his sandals so that he could kick back with God and have a good ole time. He had him take off his shoes out of a reverent attitude toward God. Last time I checked shoes are attire. God seemed to be very specific about the attire of the priests who came to worship at the Temple in the Old Testament. If I go out on a special date with my wife, I don’t go in my dirty garden soiled jeans. I dress up for her. Why should my holy God deserve any less? Does that mean that I am going to require some unsaved person to dress a certain way when they come to church? Of course not. I believe that we should come to God “Just as I Am”. I just happen to believe that we should never “leave as we came”. You mention Hymns versus CCM as not being a valid point of separation. CCM music as a movement for the most part has historically represented music that seeks to mirror the world. I used to listen to it as a teenager so I think that I can speak factually on this issue. I remember reading one of their magazines and seeing a comparison chart. If you like this heavy metal worldly group then you will like this heavy metal Christian group. God worked in my heart to help me out of compromising holy words with worldly music. He convicted my heart that holy things should not be mixed with profane things. Consequently, it wouldn’t make sense for me to maintain fellowship with believers who are set on seeking to hold God’s hand at the same time that they hold the world’s hand. Look, for me separation is as simple as the simple question that God poses in Amos 3:3 “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” How can you walk together with someone you don’t agree with? How do you fellowship with someone you don’t agree with? How do you have UNITY with someone you don’t agree with? Lest you misunderstand, I do think there are issues in the church that aren’t separating issues. You want to use a projector in your church… go for it. You want to have a café where you can fellowship after church… fine. I do believe there are “diversities of operations” (1 Cor 12:6). I’m not saying that your church has to be a carbon copy of my church but at the same time, to say that doctrinally sound churches are going to “look EXTREMELY different from one another.” in order to reach a world that is going to Hell… I don’t think how my church looks really matters that much when it comes to people being saved from Hell as opposed to whether the gospel is being faithfully preached. The gospel, not the look of my church, “is the power of God unto salvation”. Am I saying that the look of our churches isn’t important? No, my experience is that when a church looks like the world, the world isn’t all that interested because it doesn’t offer any change from the sin controlled life that they are living in. In the end, separation from worldliness validates our preaching that God can change their life and give them a radically different life in Christ.

    4. Turned off by denominational Politics… I too am turned off by politics in the church. It’s not about how big my ministry is compared to yours. It’s not about self-promotion or pastor worship. It’s not about what school I went to versus where you went. This too churns my stomach. I didn’t even know who Hyles was until I went off to Bible College and travelled around in a singing group in churches. We went to some church out in the Midwest where they had a big mural in their lobby of some old gentlemen. I asked one of the people in the church if this was a picture of their pastor to which they responded… “oh, no… that’s a picture of Dr. Hiles.” I then asked, “was he the founding pastor of your church?” They laughed at me as if they thought I was joking with them. They were flabbergasted to find out that I legitimately didn’t know who the guy was. Ok, being honest, that was a weird experience but can I say that that was one weird experience out of hundreds of wonderful experiences in churches that were not political at all. For the most part, my experience travelling in churches around this country over a period of six years with pastors young and old was a great one. Where I would disagree with you on this point is that to say that all IFB churches or even the majority of them have been this way and that only the new IFB are different is an unfair assessment that itself sounds prideful. Our senior pastor has been in the ministry for 40 years in IFB churches and is about the most non-political pastor that you will meet. I recently went to a fellowship meeting of pastors many of whom were grey headed. To be honest, I was hesitant to go. In fact, I can’t remember the last time that I have gone to a Pastor’s meeting because of the fact that I’m not interested in politicking. But I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised at the gracious and humble spirit that I encountered among this large group of pastors. In large part, these were not “new IFB” pastors but older ones who just aren’t caught up in the prideful spirit of politics. I realize that there has been man following and pastor worship in certain churches but I think it’s unfair to say that this has characterized our movement in the past. Don’t think that just because you are a young IFB Pastor that you couldn’t fall to the pride of self-promotion through your tweets, facebook page, or blogs. May God judge all of our motives and find them pure.

    5. Dedicated to Fiscal Accountability Totally agree with you here! A word to the wise though, to think that because you might brand yourself as a new or old IFB preacher means that you are any safer from giving in to temptations of greedy financial improprieties in your church would be unwise. But by the grace of God we all live a life of character in this issue. The fact of the matter is that the closest I have been to a situation like this actually involved someone that by all accounts in this blog (other than this point) would be considered a new IFB.

    6. Well Read… I should hope no one would argue with you about being well read in the Scripture. On the other hand, while I am all for reading and have a large library myself, I appreciate the counsel of older godly men to be careful what I read. I’m not saying that you can’t read something to see what the other side might say. I read the newspaper from time to time to know what the enemy is saying. I also realize that there will most likely be something about which I disagree in pretty much any book I read. That’s not my concern. I’m more fearful that the “new IFB” is making a full blown 3 course meal out of the other side’s reading material. God warns us about entertaining vain philosophies. Col_2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. I’m young but I’ve already seen many young men “swerve” (1 Timothy 1:5-6) because of what kind of reading diet they adapted.

    7. Just Getting Started Not sure how this point defines New Independent Baptists. The only thing I would comment on is the fact that you say “we are just now inheriting the established pulpit!” Let’s not throw away the foundation on which that inheritance was built.

    • Jon Booth says:

      Bro Branden,
      I appreciate the stand your taking. Your response well thought out

    • Daniel Cha says:

      1 – Obsessed with the Gospel
      “People do not change because they start coming to our church! People change because they have a supernatural interaction with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. ”
      Amen: My testimony, as important as it is to me, does not posses life-transforming power. The gospel is the power of God unto salvation.

      2 – Committed to Preaching the Bible
      “We desire to expose what the Bible is actually saying!”
      Amen: If God really wrote the Bible, then pastors should give themselves to the word of God and prayer. If I want men’s opinions, I can always read the editorials.

      3 – Men of Unity who Despise Hyper-Separatism
      “Each group seems to demand complete adherence to not only fundamentals of theology but also to complete agreement in secondary doctrinal issues…To express disagreement brings swift separation.”
      Amen: A lot of intolerance passes for “standing for the truth.”

      4 – Turned Off by Denominational Politics
      “…our proclivity toward the inane practice of 2nd degree, 3rd degree, and 4th degree separation.”
      Amen: And they’ll know we are sold-out Christians by our separation from the brother who failed to separate from the other guy who failed to separate from the preacher who’s hobnobbing with someone who didn’t go to our school…

      5 – Dedicated to Fiscal Accountability
      “If we are to lead in the coming century then we ought remove the temptation of financial corruption.”
      Amen: Indeed, there’s a severe lack of accountability on multiple fronts. But this is a big one. And I’m sure you’ll have more to say in a later post!

      6 – Well Read
      “They are not in bondage to an “Index Liborum Prohibitorum” as was instituted by the Roman Catholic Church.”
      Amen: There are several (scary) comparisons one can make between Independent Baptists and the Roman Catholic Church and this matter of books is a prime example. (And for the record, I’m BAPTIST.)

      7 – Just Getting Started
      “We hold the solution to the world’s problems and we are ready to give Him away.”
      Amen and amen!

    • Tim Knutson says:

      Bro. Josh Teis,
      I too want to hear your response to this man’s post. I have been sitting here debating on saying something, and know that I need to ask you directly . This man has asked most of my questions or stated quite well my position also.

      I’m going be honest, while you seem to initially praise the “old IFB” guys, you seemingly proceed to subtly attack all of them by only pointing out some of the worst cases. Which cases can be found in every group of people anywhere on the face of the planet. I felt like you called me a non-gospel, non-textual, thieving, legalist who only ever wants to get every body to “look like me”, because I claim to be a Bible believer that does “look like you”.

      Ultimately, it seems that the crux of most of your arguments comes back to your seeming disdain of any one who has standards higher than yourself, and feels they have a Biblical principle to support it. I am with Brandon Lawrence. I did not grow up with the standards I have now, but I was called to preach at a very young age, and in a desire to be pleasing to the God I love I found out there were certain things and ways he liked me to do things Short Example: Dress for instance, it certainly appears to me that the Lord wanted His priests to be dressed in the best available clothing in appearance, and had an expectation of coverage. When He dressed Adam and Eve there was what Adam and Eve thought was enough coverage, and then there was what God thought was enough coverage. Jesus Himself wore what appears to the nicest clothing available to Him so much so that the Roman soldiers wanted it, and shamed Him by removing His clothing. And in OUR CULTURE it is still considered best dressed if you are in a suit and tie. Lawyers still do it, Business men still do it, politicians still do it, how is it suddenly old-fashioned for preachers to still do it? If I lived in another culture, China or India perhaps, I would discover the way a man might dress there and still be dressing in a nice and more formal way and make use of that, because of the Biblical Principle. I don’t dress this way because I like it, have always done it, or because “it’s expected”, I do it because I want to please the Saviour who redeemed me, not out of fear of Him, but because I love and reverence Him, more than my own comfort and wishes. It is the “Lord’s Day” after all, not my day. It’s not a lot different from the changes I make in my habits because I love and want to please the wife who agreed to marry me! 😉
      To be lumped in with some wacko who is a dictator in his church and everyone has to talk to him before they buy a car or make a job change is rather disconcerting. So also is somehow intimating that my standards are old-fashioned and that I am causing division by living, talking, writing, preaching what I believe is Biblical, when isn’t that exactly what you are doing in this article? And has this article caused any division?

      Also, Baptists aren’t a denomination, and the passage in 1 Corinthians that you refer to is not dealing with inter-church unity, but inner-church unity. Nowhere is there a large scale call upon preachers in the N.T. to hold hands with other churches other than in missionary support. As a matter of fact there is MUCH N.T. scripture about being very careful and even separating from false teachers that would teach things contrary to what has been taught.

      I write this in interest of hearing your perspective more clearly. Because by “new” I believe you are trying to support some “new” ideology (although it sounds like the same thing I heard in high school in the 80’s), not just encouraging “new” (young) preachers.

      And I will admit in the interest of complete honesty, by the things that I have learned from reading this article, the comments and your replies, If this is what you are truly saying, I will not necessarily have any ecclesiastical fellowship with you, but that doesn’t mean I hate you, and it doesn’t mean that you might not even be preaching the gospel. However, I also (because we are each INDEPENDENT Baptists) completely respect your right to lead your church in that direction, but you cannot expect me to step back in approval just because you say that that is not Biblical Unity. If I disagree and do so Biblically, don’t you as an Independent Baptist also have to allow me to believe what I believe and act accordingly? That’s called Soul Liberty by the way, a Baptist Doctrine.

      I am trying to do the Biblical thing here and ask you directly. You did post this publicly so my answer as is Bro. Brandon’s (who I don’t think I know) public.

      Preaching the Gospel, Preaching it Textually (as best as I can), Doing My Best Financially, making proof of what I believe with Biblical Principles, and Yes, KJV,

      Tim Knutson
      Psalm 115:1

      • Branden Lawrence says:

        Bro Tim, thank you for your thoughtful and gracious response. You voiced many things that I wanted to write but didn’t because I felt guilty for such a long response already. I too am disappointed not to get a response to several of the questions here but I also realize that people cannot sit on here and comment all day long. Family and ministry call. I suppose I will just have to be left wondering where this “new independent Baptist” movement is going. It’s not so much for me personally. Even though I am always learning, by God’s grace some things are set in stone. Rather I’m more concerned for the upcoming generation (and training institutions too where my children may one day attend and find a mate/get a diploma) of preachers as well as the other preachers out there who are like I am but may feel the pressure to go this route because it is portrayed as the ONLY kind, level-headed, scholarly, liberated, bible based, passionate, soul-conscious, accountable, and fellowship enjoying type of Independent Fundamental Baptist. I pray God allows me to be all of those things and know many other brothers who desire the same but who do not desire to veer down this path. I know I could have church growth (though this is not equal to spiritual growth) If I were to just preach truth and not make any application to that truth. I know that I could ignore bible based Holy Spirit convictions to garnish more man perceived results but if I did any of that, I just happen to think that it would adversely affect the level of discipleship in my life and in the lives of those with whom I have a leadership responsibility. I know it’s hard to carry a cross, I know it’s unpopular to carry a cross, I know it’s painful, I know it is difficult to convince others to do so, I know that it will cause you to look peculiar in this world’s eyes. Real crosses are actually looked down upon in these pop culture, politically correct days and may soon be persecuted. But personally, I also know that to change in some of the areas expressed throughout the blog and replies would affect the “well done” that I long to hear after I run my course. To adopt conformity to this world in my life and in the church would affect the outcome of my works after they pass through the judgment of the fire of a holy God. Not trying to say that I’m the only one carrying a cross. Not trying to say Josh isn’t a disciple… not trying to say that you have to have a dress standard /music standard or anything but the grace of God to be saved, still only a sinner saved by grace even if I have those standards, not interested in comparing me with others because of those standards…………….none of that. Only speaking for myself and for the ones to whom God has called me to minister and for whom I will stand before God for that leadership. God will reveal one day how all of us carried our crosses and to what level and to what length we were willing to carry them. God is going to reveal (and it may not be far away) whether our works were pure and whether they were right. I will leave that up to him but I’m not “fearful” (that’s been a popular word on here) or intimidated to give words to my heart’s cry and hopefully make my mark on this generation and others to come for Jesus sake.

    • Branden Lawrence says:

      I’m assuming this is a reply to another post because I wasn’t aware that I offered any personal insults toward anyone.

    • Anonymous says:

      Outstanding post…thank you for your encouraging reply. For me, I had almost given up hope that pastors like yourself are leaving Bible college without this mindset to change the IFB. I am praying that the Lord will send more men like you who are willing to stand strong in the midst of what I consider a dangerous movement. Praying for you and your ministry!!!

    • Bro. Branden,

      I also appreciate the stand you and other young preachers are taking. As a 37 year old man who has had the calling of God to preach for these now 25 years, I have seen alot of changes. I have seen the downgrade of churches who try to bring in the “new song”, the “new IFB”, etc. The morality of our world is changing. As I try to gain support for Australian missions I am asked if I hold to the KJV position or if I separate from movements.

      I confronted men who have changed their standards and their worship to this new movement and have received much backlash. I probably will keep being ridiculed for my stand on the fundamentals, the Word of God, and the keeping away from the “new style of music.”

      I cannot stand idly by and let the old time way be washed down the drain by these modern day preachers.

      God bless all who stand in the gap and who try to “proclaim the Gospel of peace” in the old time way.

    • Andy Stevens says:

      Thanks Brother! Your reply has been a real blessing to me and I’m sure of other like minded brethren.

  98. Chelsea Reed says:

    My comment is still awaiting approval???

  99. You are really crazy or courageous for putting your thoughts out there on this issue. Probably alot of both! It’s definitely easier to go along with the flow and not make any waves or just walk away from the craziness quietly. I am glad to see someone who has a tremendous gift of communication and great influence use it to address the unholy trinity, sacred cows and elephants in the room. I also appreciate my ifb Heritage but have filtered much of it out biblically and now it is not always recognizable to some old ifbers. Obviously you have made yourself vulnerable in doing this, but “I like that” as kirk cousins would say. I look forward to more of the same. Thanks Josh

    • Josh Teis says:

      Hey Ryan! Glad to hear from you old friend.

    • Michael Depasse says:

      Brother I agree with you. I have an IFB background but the politics involved have helped me to realize what really is important. Christ is the center of our worship and in most churches today its sad to say but it seems more about procedure than worship. How can anyone worship if they are wondering what will be thought of them if they dont wear a suit or a dress? Church is supposed to edify us. We are all leaky vessels and need to be filled constantly by the Spirit but how can we be if the church is centered on its own agenda or the pastor? Pastor Ryan I appreciate you and my family and I really love your work for the Lord. I consider you my friend and brother. This article is great and I am so thankful someone said what a lot of us have been thinking. May we all turn our focus to where it really needs to be and that is on Christ not policy. Merry Christmas all!

  100. Pastor Rick Bevans says:

    I am just an old grey haired pastor that doesn’t even know if you spell grey with an e or an a. But as I read these posts it was easy for me to discern who it is that is filled with the Spirit of Truth and who it is that is filled with the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: God is gracious to give that discernment. There will come a time when some will be ashamed of the comment they posted.

    • Todd Laughbaum says:

      Amen, Bro Bevins, thank you for being a faithful Man of God! Love you!

    • Josh Teis says:

      Thank you for Commenting Bro. Bevans. I don’t know you but your kind spirit and the comments below tell me that you are highly respected. I appreciate your words here. God bless you.

  101. Kevin Connor says:

    I have never responded to a blog in my life. I hope that I don’t regret it. I am 54 years old, and from the age of 19 until two months ago, I have been a member of two different “leading” IFB churches. I found my wife at an IFB church and my children all grew up in IFB churches. I also attended an IFB college, served on the staff of an IFB church for over 17 years, and have learned a lot from IFB leaders. Therefore, I will forever be grateful for how God has used them to shape my life. However, over 10 years ago, God led us to serve in China as missionaries, and we are still here. Upon arriving in China, I began to seek God’s direction about how to go about getting the Gospel to the people He had sent me to serve. Most of the methods that I had been taught would only get me kicked out of the country in short order. Because I had been taken out of an IFB environment and was left alone to follow the Scriptures, I discovered that many of the things that I had been taught as doctrine and “essentials” of the faith were not biblical essentials. Over the course of ten years here, I have seen God transform lives without many of the so-called “essentials” that I was taught and used to be willing to fight over. I have learned that what is essential is a heart that thirsts after God. I’m afraid that in the past I spent too much time focused on “fixing” the outside without working on the inside (that applies to me personally as well as to working with others). External changes without internal changes are only temporary and only serve to make us “feel” spiritual without real spirituality. 2 Tim. 3:5 says, “Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” Not because “I am chasing the younger crowd,” but because Scripture demands it, I have turned away from following many of the man-made traditions that I have been taught that only bring about a temporary form of godliness. I work hard to pass on to the next generation the fundamentals of the faith, and plead with them not to abandon everything that they have been taught just because some of it is not scriptural, but I am not going to twist Scripture to convince them to follow traditions of man. Pastor Crane quoted 1 John 4:1 which says, “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.” I have heard this verse used over and over again, but “trying the spirits” is usually twisted to mean “see if they meet our IFB criteria.” This sets up men as the standard of godliness. When I truly tried the spirits with Scripture, I found a great contrast between the spirits that I found in many (not all) IFB churches and the fruit of the Spirit of God, which can be found in Galatians 5:22-23 and says, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” Although I believe there are many good and sincere people at IFB churches, I can no longer preach a Gospel of salvation by faith alone, but a life lived by the works of man. Although I believe there are many good and sincere people among IFB churches, for these reasons, I have resigned from the church and mission board that sent me to China, and I am going to spend the rest of my life seeking God and Him alone.

    • bdub says:

      your story saddens me. i teared up as i read it.

      “I work hard to pass on to the next generation the fundamentals of the faith, and plead with them not to abandon everything that they have been taught just because some of it is not scriptural, ”

      I fight daily to keep from abandoning it.

      “….spend the rest of my life seeking God and Him alone.”

      where I’ve been for last 10 years….

      Thank you for your comment.

    • Kevin, love you man. Stand fast in the liberty wherewith Christ has made us free.

    • Josh Teis says:

      What a testimony Kevin. I’m speechless…

    • Corey Seulean says:

      Brother Conner please give me a call if you would like. I would like to talk with you. I love you and will be praying for you. God bless!

    • Kevin Connor says:

      I would like to clarify one statement that I made. In the next to last sentence I said, “I can no longer preach a Gospel of salvation by faith alone, but a life lived by the works of man.” Two of my co-workers here in China read that sentence and did not understand what I meant, so I’m sure others also did not understand what I meant by that statement. I want to be very clear that I still preach a Gospel of salvation by God’s grace through faith alone, without ANY works of man. However, my problem is that too often I have preached this concerning the initial forgiveness of sins, but in practice, I have preached living by sets of man-made rules and the works of man rather than living by faith AFTER initially trusting Christ for salvation. According to the Bible, we are to LIVE by grace through faith in the Gospel as much as we are to have our sins initially forgiven by grace through faith in the Gospel (Hab. 2:4; Rom. 1:17; Gal. 2:20; 3:11; Heb. 10:38). We are to live the Christian life the same way that we became a Christian, by grace through faith. We are not to live by our own works any more than we are to be born again by our own works. I’m going to stop right here before I start writing a whole sermon on grace:)

  102. Robert Lane says:

    Great article! It’s tough for pastors to be courageous in any circumstance, but what you’re saying in this article can help to alleviate some of that fear associated with trying to follow the Lord. Thank you for having the boldness to write it.

  103. Tyler Nikkel says:

    Pastor Josh,
    Thank you for the excellent article. Well thought out and written. Living in Papua New Guinea I have witnessed churches bickering over stuff Americans can’t even fathom. One of the greatest needs here is a focus on the true Gospel and there is a huge vacuum of expositional Bible teaching and preaching.
    May the Lord bless your church as you serve Him in your neck of the woods.


  104. Josh Teis says:

    Thanks Mark! My Father and Mother always taught us that Missionaries are the truest heroes on the planet. Thank you for your service to our Lord.

  105. Jeremy Rands says:

    I am a Bible believing follower of Jesus Christ. “In Christ” is where my identity begins and ends. When our loyalty and identity is found in a movement we are not just in trouble, we are far gone. I fear so many have added to the Gospel. Without even realizing it has become Jesus plus standards or Jesus plus old paths or Jesus plus hymns or Jesus plus IFB. As Paul (under the influence of the Holy Spirit) said foolish Galatians who hath bewitched you. As a pastor, I want to preach the Gospel and teach the Word of God. I am not concerned with our church being identified as anything other than Biblical. Yes, I am Baptist, yes I am independent and Yes I care only to lift of the name of Jesus. Good article Josh. Looking forward to seeing you in Monclova next month.

  106. Edward Bragg says:

    Amen, Amen, Amen to Bro. Laughbaum and Micah McCurry…. Couldn’t have said it better!!!! You both are a great, godly encouragement of real Biblical Young men… Thank you. Pastor Edward Bragg

  107. David Hetzer says:

    I do not mean to be critical but really there is no spiritual value to this article. It is self exalting and creates unnecessary division in minds. Just follow Jesus and love people. I don’t understand why we have to compare ourselves to others or find purpose in putting others down. Just be what God wants you to be and that will speak for itself. We don’t need a declaration of what we are. Just my opinion. I am also a young pastor of 36.

  108. David Hetzer says:

    I would add two things.
    1. Is this an edifying article? Does this build up
    2. Is this really new? There was nothing in this article baptists haven’t been doing for 100 years.

  109. Anonymous says:

    Great article! Thank you for writing this.

  110. Josh Teis says:

    Thank you all for the great comments and discussion. Please feel free to continue.

    Unfortunately, I will not be able continue commenting on this post due to other pressing matters of life and ministry. I feel like I have answered as many comments as possible for this particular post.

    However, I will continue to write on the subjects and would love to correspond with you in future posts.


    (Please attempt to keep your comments and critiques as constructive as possible while attempting to refrain from personal attacks and hyperbolic language. Thank you my friends.

  111. Josh,

    Thank you for your post regarding “New Independent Baptists”. It was well thought-out, well written and well articulated. It certainly has created quite the interest. I normally don’t spend a lot of time on these blogs and your post was sent to me by a friend. I read it with interest. I am thankful for what you are doing in the Las Vegas area and for the souls you are reaching with the gospel. It is great to see. I am glad we had a small part in it.

    I guess many would categorize me as the “Old IFB”, likely because of what I believe and practice. However, that characterization would be mistaken. In fact, the majority of independent Baptists are not the “Old IFB” nor are we the “NIB”. We are just men of God fulfilling the will of God in our lives with little interest in what the Old or the New do or think. We are more interested in what God thinks. We are not nor ever have been a part of a “movement”. We realize that Christ died for the Church and our responsibility is to Christ, His Word and the leading of the Holy Spirit in our lives and the lives of those to whom we minister. We find no place in the Scripture where there should be any loyalty beyond the Word of God and the local church.

    Let me explain. The word “movement” seemed to be prevalent in the posting and comments. Yes, there is a “movement” that has been called the “IFB”. This “movement” is just like the denominations of the SBC, the BBF, and the GARBC, just to name a few. As denominations need leaders, movements need leaders. These leaders, because they are men, make mistakes and in some cases fall. Even Moses fell in Numbers 20 when he struck the rock. David fell in 2 Samuel 11. Good men are still men. Now there is a new “movement” called the “NIB”. This movement (our word for a denomination”) will have its leaders and these leaders are just men and they will make mistakes, lead improperly and some may fall. If history proves true, and it usually does, this movement will degenerate just like the previous ones have. It may be wise to forget the “movement” and just be the pastor God wants you to be. If you do, you will follow many pastors who are just faithfully following the Lord and pastoring the people God has given them. They are letting men answer to God for their ministries and they don’t care about the Old or the New, they care about their flock and their faithfulness to God.

    There is a word that is conspicuously missing from what I read in the post and the comments. It is the word “balance”. Balanced men don’t need any leader or movement. They have Christ and His Word. Thankfully, there are a majority of pastors in this country who are balanced in their ministries and quietly go about shepherding their flock, protecting them from those who have become biblically unbalanced in either direction.

    These men are more concerned about holiness which is another word missing in the post except for a negative mention early in the post. You see, balanced men don’t “harp” on issues like dress. They preach on how God wants us to be holy and give Him our best. It is not about specifics, it is about principles. All churches have standards. I remember one preacher saying to me that his church didn’t have any dress standards. I asked him if it were all right for a lady to wear a bikini to church. His answer was absolutely not. I then told him that he had standards but they were just lower than mine. Balanced men have standards and those standards are based on the Bible. For example, when the prodigal son came home what did the Father put on him? Luke 15:22, “Bring forth the best robe.” No, he didn’t put on a suit, shirt and tie; he put the best on him. This seems to be very simple. When meeting with the Father, we ought to wear our best. The best is different in clothing but the same in principle. Years ago, we were in a meeting back up in the mountains of West Virginia. My son said to a man dressed in very neat coveralls, “Where is the pastor?” The man replied, “I’m the pastor, son.” He was dressed in his best. Balanced men teach their people to look their best when coming to church. Why, because God deserves our best, whether in Las Vegas, Kenya or the mountains of West Virginia.

    Balanced men err on the side of holiness and modesty rather than on the side of unholiness and immodesty. Doesn’t that make sense for every preacher. For balanced men, holiness and the character of God dictates our style of worship, the songs we sing, what we wear, etc. The Lord made it clear to the children of Israel to be careful about the worldly worship of those in the land of Canaan. He warned them several times about this, Exodus 34:12-14; Numbers 33:55; Deuteronomy 7:1-10; Deuteronomy 12:1-3; Judges 2:2-3. The result of their failure is found in Judges 2 and the remainder of the book. It is a sad ending for their failure.

    You mention an “artificial list of holiness”. Josh, God made a list of standards for the Old Testament priests in Leviticus 21:16-24. This list was for those serving the physical sacrifices in the tabernacle. If God expected the Old Testament priests to have certain standards, then you would surely agree that the New Testament priests, who offer up spiritual sacrifices, 1 Peter 2:5,9, should abide by certain standards. In fact, one can take the standards listed in Leviticus and correlate them to verses in the New Testament for us today. It is true, isn’t it, that the Old Testament Scriptures “were written for our learning”, Romans 15:4

    Josh, balanced men have preached expository messages for years. Because some “leaders” who thought that everyone followed them, read a verse, closed their Bible and ranted for forty-five minutes doesn’t mean that thousands of godly men across this country did the same. If that were the case, there wouldn’t be good churches scattered throughout this land with good people in them serving the Lord and living holy lives.

    Remember you are the third generation, not the second. The second, “Old”, followed men who gave up so much to become independent Baptists. These were men who lost their churches, their friends and many times their financial security. They left the SBC to begin churches without any ties to the denominational structure. However, they brought with them remnants of the denomination. They still remain with us today. They started fellowships and associations, thinking these would be needed to hold them together. These became the “movements”, “camps” and the denominations of the IFB. They are still with us today and the “Old” (IFB) developed these movements with their leaders and these leaders and followers separated from anyone who disagreed with them. This is what you are decrying and you should. However, if you are not careful, you will fall into the same scenario. You are labeling a new “movement” called the NIB. This will follow the same track as before and the things you are decrying now will come back to haunt you. One day there will likely be a NNIB which will stand for the “New New Independent Baptists”. These young preachers will criticize you for your failures, (Yes, you will have them!) and start the process all over again. Who knows what source of media they will have!!!

    Wouldn’t it be better to simply have the “movement” to the Holy Spirit in our churches rather than some man made title for unbalanced men to follow. There have been good, godly, balanced, independent Baptists down through the years that have done this. We need no Old, IFB, leaders and we need no new, NIB, leaders. We need God and our attention to His holiness and character, nothing else!!!!

    The denominational politics you mention is exactly what I am talking about. As the IFB tried to dictate philosophy and standards, now there is the NIB and this new denomination (movement) is going to do the same. Balanced men don’t need nor want you or anyone else to lead them. They have a leader who is the Chief Shepherd. These men didn’t listen to the IFB and they aren’t going to listen to the NIB. Yes, there will be those who follow this new movement just as their have been men who followed the old movement. Thankfully, most won’t. They are too busy studying the Scriptures and caring for their flock to be on the Internet reading and writing about such things.

    Yes, their have been men, some leaders and some followers, who mismanaged their finances and there will be others, even in the NIB. Why? Because men are wicked flesh and like the power that comes with the pulpit. However, they are and will be a minority. Thankfully, the majority of pastors are faithfully leading their flocks, not lording over them. These men understand they are answerable to God and He will bring into light that which is done in darkness. They are faithful men who sadly have been overshadowed but those who have gained the headlines because of their pride and arrogance.

    Josh, surely you don’t believe that the NIB are the first ones to be “well read”. I really don’t think that is what you intended but it came across that way. Look at the ministries of men who are balanced in their ministries. These men have spent time in the Word of God and studying the wisdom of men of the past. Their libraries are filled with volumes and volumes of books to prepare them for the pulpit. They prepared for Sunday by hours of study. Sadly, many of the NIB are spending their time on the Internet with some getting their messages from Sermon Central or some other Internet source and getting up on Sunday and preaching warmed over truth that someone else got from God.

    Yes, you are just getting started but in fact you are not. It was started for you by many who sacrificed more than you will ever know. They fought the fights so you don’t have to fight them. You have been given a great heritage and one that you should not take for granted. Yes, men failed and there will be failures in the NIB too. Anytime men are involved in ministry, there will be failures. Anytime men follow leaders rather than Christ and His Word there will be men who fail. They always have and they always will. Sadly, unbalanced, unbiblical men, chose to cover those failures rather than facing them biblically. Hopefully, the NIB will learn from their error. May I encourage you to be faithful to His Word and not some philosophy or ideas of men. They always produce failure.

    There is another word that seemed to be prevalent in your post and the comments. It is the word, “preference”. Maybe I am wrong but there seems to be a major emphasis on this word when relating to the NIB. Could we possibly be looking at this from the wrong perspective? We seem to be looking at it from our preference and what each person would prefer, thus giving them liberty to do as they see fit. Maybe we should look at this from God’s perspective. What does God prefer? Would He prefer our best dress or casual dress for worship, Exodus 19:10-11, Luke 15:22? Would He prefer modesty or immodesty, 1 Timothy 2:9? Would He prefer music that has nothing to do with the world or music that has a worldly connotation, 1 John 2:15-17? Maybe it would be best if we started to look at it a bit differently. It may make a difference in our worship style, our dress and our walk with the Lord if we begin seeking what God prefers.

    I also noticed that the word “Fundamental” is missing. Maybe you should consider “NIFB”. Sadly, the Old missed, not the word, but the truth of the word. It’s not just the word but the truths behind it that are important. As time progressed, the IFB got sidetracked by side issues forgetting the fundamentals and where they came from. If you chose to eliminate the “fundamentals” you too will end up where they ended up. Fundamentals are simply the basics. If you ignore the basics of our faith, you too will fail. All you need to do is ask any manager of any team what happens when they get away from the fundamentals of the game they manage or coach. They will tell you that any team not concentrating on the fundamentals will end up in last place. While some of the outspoken leaders of the camps, movements, and denominations got away from the fundamentals, good balanced men of every decade didn’t. They quietly stood true to the fundamentals of the Scripture without influence from anyone.

    Josh, I want you to know I want you to be as successful in your ministry as you can be. Your success will not be based on how many you have or how many you influence. It will be based on how you faithfully follow the Word of God. I encourage you to be a balanced preacher. If you do, you will follow in the steps of many godly preachers who have gone before you. They are not the “Old” IFB. They are not the “NIB”. They are balance preachers, holding forth the truth to the flocks God has given them. They are waiting for the “chief Shepherd” to appear when they shall “receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.” 1 Peter 5:4.

    May the Lord bless you.

    Your Friend,

    Dr. Earl Jessup
    Baptist Church Planting Ministry

    • Robert Martinez says:

      Brother Jessup,

      I haven’t heard from you in a long time. Actually since my early days in Bible College!
      Let me say this. Your reply was absolutely… needed. I like many, almost bit entirely into this “idea” of NIB. I am so thankful for your clarity on the matter and while I think that I fully understand where Josh is coming from, I am more than willing to listen to the older generation on this matter entirely, and have seen the need for clarity in the apparent confusion. I wanted to highlight one of your points, you mentioned…
      “balanced men have preached expository messages for years. Because some “leaders” who thought that everyone followed them, read a verse, closed their Bible and ranted for forty-five minutes doesn’t mean that thousands of godly men across this country did the same.”
      I could not agree more. I think that for the most part we have “broad brushed” the majority of solid, godly, and balanced men of God in this matter. This is unfortunate, and is at best a terrible move on our part as young preachers. I hope we never get to the point of not regarding counsel from the grey headed. (That is not to say that all grey heads have wisdom, I have seen some absurd and extreme responses.)
      I think the point is made in this article, however I think, to an extent, that it is guilty of that which it is against in the first place. There are valid points on both sides, but I think we are seeing a reactionary move with this whole idea of NIB. Knee jerk reaction almost.
      As a good friend of mine recently mentioned recently online, “Just as much pride can be found in being a “new” Independent Baptist as in being an “Old” one. #takeheed

      Thank you Dr. Jessup!

    • Branden Lawrence says:

      Wise, gracious, balanced counsel. Thank you for your insight and thank you for your many years of faithful impact on church planting. May the Lord bless you.

    • Lynn says:

      Thank you for the time you took to add balance to this discussion. Several commenters have alluded to men of God who covered up immorality or financial indiscretions. You also referred to the “close-your-Bible-and-listen-to-me-rant” type preaching. My family member is one of THE “cover up-ers” and still remains loyal to an old IFB leader who is wrought with immorality. I have been hurt by that type of IFBism, in fact, until very recently that was all I knew. I am a perfect candidate to be swayed by all Josh has said here. So much of it sounds amazingly freeing. “Fear will keep a man quiet when he ought to speak, but he will call it discretion.” That was my experience in my home church. So I thank you for slowing it down and bringing sage wisdom.

    • Tom Bryant says:

      Thanks, Dr. Jessup. At last, a well thought out and balanced reply. In 100% agreement.

  112. Tammy Postma says:

    Sheeeesh! It took me an hour to get to the bottom of the comment thread so I could leave mine! 😉 Just wanted to say that I’m proud of you and Heather and all you’ve done there in Vegas to reach the many lives you have. Your huge step in posting this article is very encouraging. You probably still have no idea the liberation you’ve offered to the remnant of the OIFB. (The next few days will be excited!)
    God Bless you guys! Our family loves you!

  113. Nicolas Dunn says:

    Interesting article. I must say I find myself confused as to the actual issue, especially in regards to “old” and “new” Independent Baptists. Now, I am not speaking of the article per se, but that those who espouse the author’s views make statements such as “I left the IFB movement” while they claim to now be in unity and harmony with Christ as their focus. Point being, it would seem more believable that those who had misplaced their affections on movements and men, happened to wake up from their stupor and then blamed it on the “movement” they worshipped, rather than, that they have found some omitted truth in all of Christendom. Of course the natural response of any who escaped a self inflicted prison of man worship, would be to blame the captor and praise the liberator, which at this point happens to be this so-called “new” Independent movement. What is ironic is that the things claimed as being “new” are in fact views that many Christians, for hundreds of years have held, and the “old” position is in fact only in the minds of many who were “freed” from their idol worship of a man and a movement. There are many Christians who didn’t even know what IFB stood for until those who “pulled out” of the movement coined the term. There are churches spread across the world that adhere to, and have adhered to in the past, all of the points brought out in this article. If you are “camp” hunting, then I suppose the article is for that crowd, but the “new” crowd by no means has a monopoly on unity, fervor, biblical authority and expository preaching. Really, most of this is just song and dance between liberty in Christ and how it is used to prove ones point. The comments tell the tale. Any person who took the article to mean what it obviously was intended to mean, would naturally have come to the conclusion that the author believes “new” is better than “old”, otherwise there would be no necessity to make that point. Or, at a minimum, he believes the new is a God send to a stagnated old system. So the curt triumphant retorts of “point proven” in the comments section, smack of arrogance and ignore the elephant in the room. This all takes away from the main point. Which is, according to the author’s response in the comments, to do things according to the Bible. So we must ask ourselves then, without the bias of some given “camp”, are the points brought out in this article biblical? And are they new? And a follow up question would be, “has the ‘old’ Independent Baptists failed in their observance of them?” Of course, I await the responses informing me that I missed the whole point of the article, however, anyone with any sense knows the point was old vs. new. The platform chosen was not one of “Christ” alone, and His eternal truths that are not “new” or “old” but ever present in His body here on earth. Sheep always look for safety in herds, which is why they must, out of necessity, vilify other herds, and glorify their own. Old or new is really irrelevant, it was the Old men in Haggai that hindered the rebuilding of the temple, and it was the Athenians who were interested in nothing more than new things. The Bible is truth eternal, and is not monopolized by the “old days” nor is it redefined by the “new generation”, these truths have been on this earth since Christ gave them through His Word, they have been mishandled, exploited and even twisted at the hands of young and old alike, but will always be here until “truth falls in the streets” (Isa. 59:14). So, to anyone from the outside looking in, this whole article’s premise, and the driving force behind most of the comments is nothing more than the pot calling the kettle black. When some conservative “old” timer responds against new methods, you label him, and when the “new” crowd gets on here with their IFB comments and liberation, he is labeled. In the end, all we are seeing is a battle between two factions that BOTH have been deceived and led astray from the “simplicity that is in Christ”. Those that are being called “the old” independent group should never forget that there is no monopoly on good Bible truths, and the “new” crowd should spend less time defining themselves by the object of their misplaced trust. I now will “sit among the ashes” (Job 2:8) and await my rebuke.

  114. There is one big elephant in the room that the proponents of the “old paths” must deal with.
    If your old methods and old songs and old paths work, why have you handed us a heathen nation?
    Keep yelling about your old ways, and we’ll just follow Christ!

  115. Josh Teis says:

    Check out this follow-up post that was written by may father:

  116. Josh Teis says:

    Check out this follow-up post that was written by may father:

  117. Great article! Honest talk & I appreciate it!
    Wish I would’ve met friends like you (thinker/leader) early on in my ministry. Keep following the Lord & leading with courage! God bless!

  118. Paul Miller says:

    Great post, Josh. Refreshing! Thanks.

    Probably the most relevant thing you said was “Trust me. I understand the pressure. Simply by writing this post I am opening myself up to reprisals.”

    LOL! From the comments you can see that you’re right! Keep up the good work and keep your eyes on the Lord.

    BTW, I love point #6. It reminded me of an article I read a couple of years back written by an IFB leader who said challenged IFBs to be thinkers. I was blessed by it! Sadly, thinking is lacking in our movement.

    We love to scoff at the Presbyterians and their “prideful intellectualism,” and there may be cause for blame if it is, in fact, a hinderance. But, I can tell you from experience (I know some Pres. Pastors) that they struggle with not looking down on IFBs for their lack of scholarship. I think there is cause for blame on us in that regard. Too many times we seem to revel in being “unlearned and ignorant men.” That is not a badge we should ever boast about! IFBs should be broad readers, always seeking truth.

  119. Paul Miller says:

    By the way, friends, if you’d like to read an entire book written by an “old” IFB pastor who echoes Josh’s thoughts, I’d highly recommend this book by Paul Chappell:

    I’ve read it and agree with it 100%. Care needs to be taken in criticizing the difference Josh is making between “New” and “Old” IFBs. He is not saying that the “Old” have nothing to offer. But we all must recognize that we live in a culture that is vastly different from the culture the “Old” IFBs lived in. New methods of reaching people MUST be used. (Note that I did NOT say “compromise.” Please don’t read into my comments what you want to see.) Sometimes fresh, young minds are needed to see the path clearly.

    At the same time, the “New” IFBs would do well to never forget the good things about their heritage, and there are many. There is much wisdom in the Old Guard that we can use for the glory of God in this generation. Let us bless them as the torch is passed.

  120. McAllister Giebelstein says:

    I posted this comment on the article entitled “The Old Independent Baptist” and thought it may be applicable here after seeing some of the comments that have been posted here.

    First of all, I am a young man. I am only 20 years old and praise the Lord to already be in my first year of full time ministry, which I definitely count as a privilege. I have much to learn in my life, and am earnestly studying the Word of God and learning from aged men of God as the Scripture commands in 2 Timothy 2:15 and Psalm 101:6. I praise the Lord for other young men I have seen comment on this forum that are seeking to serve the Lord with their life. That said, it troubles me how some of my peers are responding on this forum.

    It seems to me that some (not all) are all for unity…unless someone disagrees with the conclusion you have come to, and then it is OK to attack and criticize. I don’t mean to criticize people with this comment. I posted this reply on one rather disparaging comment, but it is a word to any who have used this column to launch an attack on someone just because they raised caution on a direction both of the Independent Baptist articles have pushed.

    Although I am young, I have come to a conclusion based on Biblical principles that Separation and Standards are an issue that God is very concerned with. John 13:34-35 does say the disciples of Christ shall be known by their love one for another, but in the same discourse Jesus points out in John 14:15, 21, 23-24; an 15:14 that our love should produce obedience to the command of God, even as far as to say in one of those passages “Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.”

    Also in reference to a previous comment by Jon Booth (on “The Old Independent Baptist”) I don’t believe that the implication was that the traditions of men created by the Pharisees (or by men today) were what Jesus was referring to. Jesus was reinforcing the principle set forth in Matthew 4:4, that man should live by “every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” The truth is if we ignore the warnings of separation from the world, we are becoming more like the Corinthian church than anything else.

    The Apostle Paul presented a plea from God to this carnal church in 2 Corinthians 6:11-18. God said they could enjoy the father-son relationship with him when they came out from among them and became separate. Because I love God, I am fearful that anything come between the sweet communion He wants to have with me. I don’t want anything to cut off that relationship. I don’t want iniquity to hinder my prayer life (Psalm 66:18). I don’t want rebellion to cut off my call to God (Proverbs 1:20-33). Because I love God, I embrace standards and separation.

    I was recently speaking with a friend on this issue. As I related to him the conclusion I had come to on this matter, he said to me “Tell me, where is the line then. What is iniquity? Is wearing a pair of pants what separates us from God? Is being drunk what is evil, or is it just one drink? Is having a drum set on the platform what separates us from God? Should we be like the Church of God and not use pianos because they can be used wrong?” To be honest, I don’t know where God’s “line” is. We have Scripture on many issues that do draw God’s line, but some areas are unclear. What I do know, and what I related to my friend was this: I have standards because I don’t want to even get close to the line. I don’t have standards because an institution told me so or because it is a requirement for me to go to Christian School. I have standards because I love God. In truth, most all people who have standards have them because they love God.

    I do not intend for this comment to be a condemnation on those who do not agree with me. To those who will attribute my position as being molded by some Bible College or by my worshipping of a pastor, I will tell you that I actually did not finish Bible College because I saw a spirit being presented that may have caused some to depart from standards and separation. I will not name people or institutions, but I saw people lift separation and standards above the love of God, demanding people to adhere to an “artificial list of holiness based on personal preferences” as Pastor Josh mentioned in “The New Independent Baptist.” I saw men demand unconditional loyalty without question. I have seen men fall into sin, have seen men fall into financial irresponsibility and down the line. I have struggled with bitterness in my life because of it. But I have come to realize that our service should be to the Lord, not to a man. “The best of men are men at best” as the saying goes. While some men have left people with a bitter taste for the Old Time Religion, I cannot deny Biblical Principles because they misused their position.

    I read through “The New Independent Baptist” and studied Bible passages for hours before I came to the position I present in this comment. I present to all who read, what I believe to be the Biblical position. I do not condemn others who do not come to this conclusion. I believe Pastor Josh Teis, Dr. David Teis, and others who hold to the positions and principles set forth in these articles are sincere and believe they have come to a Biblical conclusion, and I respect that. It is not my place to say that you are wrong or are leading an assault against “True Christianity.” I do ask that those who do not agree with my position, and the position that other men such as Dr. Dennis Corle, Jon Booth, Dr. Bruce Goddard, and others have enough grace not automatically condemn this position and label us as some kind of “hyper-separatist” sect. We do not seek to cause discord among our brethren; we, along with many on this blog, just want to share what we have found in our studies.

    To those who are reading this, I thank you for taking time to consider this, and thank all who are willing to stand and preach the gospel of Christ – The gospel that takes the life of a hell bound sinner in rebellion against God, and transforms him into the image of Christ. As Paul said himself, “Notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice.” May God bless you as you seek to serve Him.

  121. Michele says:

    My husband has written a book title “Robots or Rebels: The Danger of Growing Up a Legalist, and Biblical Motivations for Treu Holiness” that you all might be interested in. Here is the link for it:

  122. Michele says:

    My husband has written a book title “Robots or Rebels: The Danger of Growing Up a Legalist, and Biblical Motivations for True Holiness” that you all might be interested in. Here is the link for it:

  123. S says:

    Hi Josh,

    A Pastor friend of mine sent me a link to your article “The New Independent Baptists.”

    I was fascinated by it. I’ve read (and reread it) several times. It’s beautifully written.

    Each time I read it I find myself wishing that I knew these New Independent Baptists you write about.

    Sadly, I’ve never met one.

    In fact, the Independent Baptist people in my circle are nothing like the ones you describe.

    I grew up in the Independent Fundamental Baptist (IFB) Church.

    I went to a small Christian School that was associated with our IFB Church.

    After High School I attended the Bible College that was associated with our IFB Church.

    Over the last 20 years I’ve faithfully attended 3 Independent Fundamental Baptist Churches in 3 States.

    I’ve rarely (almost never) missed a service. My family is active.

    I teach Sunday school, my wife sings in the Choir, we help in the Youth Group on Wednesdays.

    I’m surrounded by Independent Fundamental Baptist people; my friends, my family, even my coworkers.

    But none of them are as you’ve described.

    Let me describe to you the Independent Baptist people I’m surrounded by:

    “The Same Old Independent Baptist”

    They Are Spiritual Elitists
    Whether it’s dress standards, music standards or which version of the Bible is best; the people in my circle believe they’ve set the highest standard- and anyone with lesser standards is an inferior Christian. For Example: Most of the IFB people in my circle are King James only. While I believe the King James Version is the most accurate English translation, the people I’m surrounded by are condescending and belittle anyone with a different “perversion” as they call it. They refuse to associate themselves with anyone who doesn’t believe the exact same way they do- about everything. The people in my circle practice extreme separation from the World (women don’t wear pants, men don’t wear shorts.) This is a matter of personal conviction, but the people in my circle exercise these convictions with a spirit of piety as if their standard makes them a better Christian. They separate themselves from the World, but also from other believers with lesser standards. They scan social media and say “Did you see Bob is letting his daughter wear pants now?” with a look of disgust. They hang their head in disappointment and sigh as if they’ve just lost a loved one.

    They Live for the Approval of Others
    The Independent Baptist people I’m surrounded by aren’t living for Christ’s approval, but for the approval of others. Their convictions and the way they live is not rooted in a healthy personal relationship with Jesus Christ, but rather, based on what their peers will think of them. As children we were not allowed to movie theaters. We accepted that. We were not allowed into Blockbuster Video either (remember those?) the explanation was this: “Someone may see you walk in to rent a movie- but they don’t know what type of movie you’re renting.” Likewise, we were prohibited from eating at Chili’s, Applebee’s or any restaurant centered around a bar because “Someone may see you walk in and think you’re drinking at the bar.” I told you I’ve rarely missed Church in 20 years; partly because any absence is followed by a visit or a phone call from the Church staff asking why we weren’t “in our place.”

    They Keep the Rules but have no Relationship
    The IFB people who were most influential during my teenage years taught us “What a Christian does” but never “Why a Christian does it.” Does that make sense? Christians don’t attend movies, don’t listen to secular music, don’t drink or smoke, don’t have long hair, Christian women don’t wear pants. They taught us the rules, but never the relationship. They never attached a Biblical principle or Bible verse so that we understood why these rules existed. What’s on the outside was emphasized, but what’s on the inside was minimized. I grew up in a Church where people acted as if they never sinned, not in a place where we discussed how to avoid the dangers of sin.
    My parents have been a part of the IFB for 20+ years. They never miss. They sit on the front row, Mom sings loud and Dad shouts “Amen.” This Christmas they’re going through a divorce. They say they don’t love each other anymore. They haven’t said a word to their Pastor or Church friends out of fear of what their peers will think of them.

    Their Lives Do Not Reflect the Gospel
    It’s been years since I’ve seen someone walk the aisle at Church and accept Christ. Years.
    I accept part of the blame. I don’t think we’re living in such a way that people long for the relationship and peace that can only be found in Jesus Christ. Most of the IFB people in my circle have no joy in their lives. There is nothing in their walk that would compel a lost person to accept Christ. We’ve gotten out of the business of reaching lost souls and have instead become a Social Club for conservative Baptist people.

    In short, the Independent Baptist people I’m surrounded by are spiritual elitists who follow rules for the approval of others but seem to have no genuine relationship with Jesus Christ.

    That’s where I live.

    Those are the “New” Independent Baptist I know.

    And so, your article (to me) was more of a call to action.

    A desperate plea for Independent Baptist people to behave the way you claim they already are.

    It was both encouraging and disheartening.


  124. Max Molyneux says:

    Having come out of liberal Protestantism, I admired the modest dress, abstinence from alcohol and belief in inerrancy. Each church has a right to establish standards of conduct. That doesn’t make you better than other Christians any more than wearing certain colors makes you a better sports team. Bashing the NIV or NASV by calling them “perversions” crosses the line, makes a mockery of serious perversions, and shows poor judgement. I find the older hymns more meaningful/worshipful, but much of music is subjective. The main criticisms I offer are that music that is too loud can cause headaches and hearing loss, and swinging your hips to the music on the stage is disturbing. The lack of humilty is common among Baptists of all stripes. This might be a side effect from the good medicine of not believing in moral relativism. Because we know we have the truth in the Bible, the danger lies in applying an absolutist template to every issue, preaching, for example, that women’s dress standards are as clear as the doctrine of the Trinity. This absolutist mentality also leads to authoritarianism, where the shepherd becomes a cattle driver. It’s great for former Catholics who are used to being told what to do. It’s not so great for former Protestants who come from a more democratic/consultative environment and consider this type of leadership to be cult-like.

  125. Pastor Adrian says:

    Jesus said to the Pharisees in Matthew 9, go and learn what this means,’I desire mercy not sacrifice’. He quoted from Hosea 6:6 which goes on to say, ‘And the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings.’ When your pursuit for personal holiness becomes your sole objective you fall straight into the trap of Legalism. But when God is your pursuit He brings about the change in your heart and life and not at the expense of others. GREAT ARTICLE

  126. Ronnie Wise says:

    Thank you for this well written article. I find this line of thinking Biblical, refreshing and encouraging!

  127. Jordan Spencer says:

    Bro. Booth I couldn’t agree with you more. Well said.

  128. Marcos Sanchez Jr. says:

    I am a 23 years old man and i am an OLD independent Baptist, I would even go as far and call myself an ANCIENT Baptist. And being only 23 years old; I Still follow after older wiser men. I grew up in the World and got save when I was 16, and saw the extreme need for separation.

    The reason why I am commenting on this article is because it concerns me, and makes me wonder if you are truly a Independent Baptist, I mean, You have your SOME of your doctrinal statements on your site correct, but anyone can just copy and paste that onto their church website. What concerns me is your way of reaching people, and your method of ministry, and your core values. To be honest your methods are the same as any other liberal ecumenical church that would not agree with us OLD independent Baptist. You see the reason why we OLD Independent Baptist are I guess you would say (Hyper-Separatists) is because we know the fruit that the liberal route or what you would call (NEW independent Baptist movement) takes our teens, our adults, and even our older people, it always produces carnal Christians, Christians that are emotionally driven. The reason we OLD Independent Baptist don’t agree with some one that doesn’t adhere to the old fashioned hymns and would rather have some Hillsong specials (CCM) sung in their church is because we know that they are not going the same direction as us. You see Josh we OLD independent Baptist have always been known to be conservative, and yes we catch a lot of heat for that, But we are not here to please man we are here to please God. Yes I believe that we shouldn’t associate with just anyone, just because they call themselves Independent Baptist means we should associate with them. Yes I know in your article you bash on that we “actively attack fellow independents”. But Jesus did bring a sword, and a sword does divide. Josh what I am trying to say is that I believe that you don’t have a right perspective of Biblical separation. Also you should change the name of your church to Southern hills Church, and take the name Baptist out, because you are not a real Baptist. A True Baptist believes in separation, they believe in the holiness God, and name Baptist has a deep meaning to it as well you should probably study some Baptist history because if you do not know where you are from you don’t know where you are going. I know I will probably catch some heat because of this comment, Like Pastor Bruce Goddard did. I just want the young people to wake up!!!! To help them see that this new Independent Baptist moment isn’t right. Like I said I didn’t grow up in an independent Baptist church, but I saw the true Christianity that was produced out of it and I knew that is what I wanted and it has been working for the last 2,000 years so far in our OLD independent Baptist Churches.

  129. Marcos Sanchez Jr. says:

    I am a 23 years old man and i am an OLD independent Baptist, I would even go as far and call myself an ANCIENT Baptist. And being only 23 years old; I Still follow after older wiser men. I grew up in the World and got save when I was 16, and saw the extreme need for separation.

    The reason why I am commenting on this article is because it concerns me, and makes me wonder if you are truly a Independent Baptist, I mean, You have your SOME of your doctrinal statements on your site correct, but anyone can just copy and paste that onto their church website. What concerns me is your way of reaching people, and your method of ministry, and your core values. To be honest your methods are the same as any other liberal ecumenical church that would not agree with us OLD independent Baptist. You see the reason why we OLD Independent Baptist are I guess you would say (Hyper-Separatists) is because we know the fruit that the liberal route or what you would call (NEW independent Baptist movement) takes our teens, our adults, and even our older people, it always produces carnal Christians, Christians that are emotionally driven. The reason we OLD Independent Baptist don’t agree with some one that doesn’t adhere to the old fashioned hymns and would rather have some Hillsong specials (CCM) sung in their church is because we know that they are not going the same direction as us. You see Josh we OLD independent Baptist have always been known to be conservative, and yes we catch a lot of heat for that, But we are not here to please man we are here to please God. Yes I believe that we shouldn’t associate with just anyone, just because they call themselves Independent Baptist means we should associate with them. Yes I know in your article you bash on that we “actively attack fellow independents”. But Jesus did bring a sword, and a sword does divide. Josh what I am trying to say is that I believe that you don’t have a right perspective of Biblical separation. Also you should change the name of your church to Southern hills Church, and take the name Baptist out, because you are not a real Baptist. A True Baptist believes in separation, they believe in the holiness God, and name Baptist has a deep meaning to it as well you should probably study some Baptist history because if you do not know where you are from you don’t know where you are going. I know I will probably catch some heat because of this comment, Like Pastor Bruce Goddard did. I just want the young people to wake up!!!! To help them see that this new Independent Baptist moment isn’t right. Like I said I didn’t grow up in an independent Baptist church, but I saw the true Christianity that was produced out of it and I knew that is what I wanted and it has been working for the last 2,000 years so far in our OLD independent Baptist Churches.

  130. Anonymous says:

    The thing that I find interesting is that point #1 says that you are “Obsessed with the Gospel” yet the so-called “New Independent Baptist” have drifted away from soul-winning…they are too busy with personal ambitions to run bus routes…the people as a whole couldn’t lead someone to Christ if their life depended on it. The real Independent Baptist have a “Soul-Winning culture,” It’s what we do…it’s who we are!!! We are “Obsessed with the Gospel”!!!

  131. steve crane says:

    Bro. Conner: Send all the thousands of dollars that were given to you by the IFB.
    That would be the right thing to do. “DO RIGHT”
    Thank you, Bro. Steve Crane

  132. Anonymous says:

    No I believe in good stewardship, and the number is in the millions. I also believe in telling the truth. That which has not been spent needs to go back to the people that sent it because they were defrauded thinking they were sending it to a KJV, soul-winning, traditional music, non contemporary, non progressive salvation missionary, yet this was not so. Amen!

    • ah yes, the dreaded contemporary music scarecrow. You do realize that all music at some point was contemporary. People decried the songs that were replacing the Psalms in church as only Psalms were acceptable in church. Does the cognitive dissonance in your own mind every cause you to scream?

      • Anonymous says:

        No but black light rock concerts in the place of spiritual songs and Psalms and hymns makes me scream to see the falling away right before my eyes. Our Savior is pleading for you to return to the faith of your Fathers. Ephesians 5:17

        • Steve Crane says:

          Bro. Conner sir we are thankful for your sacrifice, though we do not nor will not agree on some things. Thank you for giving ten plus years to China. I pray you only the best. I juat wish the apparent doctrinal changes and oversight of ministry would have been disclosed to all the missionaries before they come to help you on the field. Blessings…

  133. I liked your article-Very nice. I am not sure I agree with the well read part as I believe all our answers are in the Bible. If you need to learn how to repair a car-OK read other books but for anything that gives opinion on the Bible, I prefer the horses mouth.
    I guess this is pretty much who I am without even reading what I should be 🙂 You will get opposition by what I call the good old boys club. Those who as you say have one way because of traditions of men. They promote music of Fanny Cosby’s type (which I do love) but discount all else . I never see them approve the high sounding symbols or great celebration of David’s day. Good piece. Keep spreading the word. Let’s get less phoneys and more people listening to God.

  134. I liked your article-Very nice. I am not sure I agree with the well read part as I believe all our answers are in the Bible. If you need to learn how to repair a car-OK read other books but for anything that gives opinion on the Bible, I prefer the horses mouth.
    I guess this is pretty much who I am without even reading what I should be 🙂 You will get opposition by what I call the good old boys club. Those who as you say have one way because of traditions of men. They promote music of Fanny Cosby’s type (which I do love) but discount all else . I never see them approve the high sounding symbols or great celebration of David’s day. Good piece. Keep spreading the word. Let’s get less phoneys and more people listening to God.

  135. Anonymous says:

    Blunt and harsh lessons learned from an “OLD” Fundamentalist

    I want to caution anyone who would define themselves as IFB or even New IFB to be very discerning as to what this author represents through his blog and more importantly his comments to the other comments…

    “Some of my dearest friends are in the SBC.”

    “One book that helped me tremendously was Grace Awakening by Chuck Swindoll. Pastor Swindoll is respected across denominational lines and even loved by Independent Baptist leaders. You’ll be hard pressed not to find a pastor without one of his tremendous books (well-worn, highlighted, and dog-eared) on his shelf. Pick up this book and see if what he speaks about is Biblical.”

    Who a man associates with is a good indicator of who he is and just as important as who he is becoming. When you so enthusiastically espouse Chuck Swindoll who preaches the views of an ecumenicist herectic, I dare say at a minimum you risk being influenced the wrong way doctrinally. I said that as nicely as I could!! 😉

    Jack Hyles preached for SBC pastors and others who were not IFB… BUT he looked at where they were headed as much as where they were. That is one reason he did preach for and with people like Lester Roloff who you correctly commented on earlier in the post. Lester was separating from the SBC over docternal issues and heading the right way doctrinally but didn’t see the issue with Bible versions.

    You may not be off on salvation by grace through faith which would then place you with those others that Jesus said not to interfere with who are preaching in His name. I recognize that you could feel the same of me that I am that group. I do have some major reservations that my impression was that you were very hessitant with naming versions that you thought were right or wrong. Satan desparately wants to water God’s word down and confuse the issue… Each Bible is a seed which reproduces itself. Be very careful that you evaluate that seed and its crop to determine if you really want that “version.”

    People unfortunately can take a “standard” and apply it without understanding the principle that defines the standard. Wearing facial hair is not sinful now but was at one point in society a measure of rebellion. Jesus had his beard plucked so was he a bad respresentative of Christ because he had a beard? The principle is to look clean and represent your best.

    The same principle applies to suit and tie. It is to look your best as an ambassador for Christ and giving your best for Christ. I would not wear tattered jeans and a t-shirt to a job interview, why would I do so to church? However, it is not a requirement worldwide that people wear a shirt and tie. The principle is to give your best to Christ and that applies culturaly and economically. It would be a sin to wear the customary clothing of a nudist colony just as it would to wear a bikini bathing suit at a beach resort to church. A dividing line many “seasoned” Christians fail at is applying a non-salvation doctrine to an unsaved or baby Christian expecting them to adhere to a standard before teaching them first. People need to be taught patiently and not berated because they don’t immediatly adhere to certain standards.

    As with EVERY “denomination,” there is fighting among the people. We are sinners who sin. It is unfortunate that it happens, I wish the pastors would just stick to shepharding their flock rather than poisoning them with the activities of another independent baptist. My church doesn’t need me to tell them anything of Pastor Teis and I’m sure he would agree vice versa. Isn’t that part of being “Independent” ??? Pastor Teis is to pastor his church and he answers to God for it just like any other IFB. If I choose to bring something up to my church it will be via teaching my flock the Biblical principle for a doctrine they may be struggling with and not to malign Pastor Teis.

    We as humans want a human leader by individual or denomination. Jack Hyles was independent but did open his church up to allow other Pastors to see how he did it. Unfortunately some turned him into their unofficial denominational leader instead. Certainly we can look to others and learn from what they have done which is as Bro Hyles wanted but he hated the idea of being a denominational leader. He made this type of statement many times.

    It is unfortunate that there are Pastors who don’t know their Bible doctrines and then belittle their flock for asking doctrinal questions. Again, this is with ANY “denomination.” In my opinion, if you are a pastor and cannot answer Biblically to your Baptist distinctives and the major issues of separation, get out of the ministry till you can. Don’t accuse the simple of being rebels just because they asked you a question you didn’t know the answer to. Use some discernment as to the nature of the questions.

    IFB has gone overboard with hiding sin AND EVIL within our churches to the point that 20/20 could expose what they did. It is biblical not to go around broadcasting others sin. However, when you have a predator or evil among the ranks, the pastor is bound under God to protect/warn the flock from that person. You don’t hide the fact that abuse is occuring. There will be much blood at the hands of well meaning IFB pastors because they misunderstood the principle of protecting the testimony of a sinner vs allowing evil to lurk within the church without at least warning the flock or kicking the wolf out.

    I am sure my comments will infuriate both sides of the fence which really wasn’t the intention. Pastor Teis I believe you are wrong doctrinally on some serious issues… BUT that is between your God and your church to work out. TRUE IFB pastors, you need to look in the mirror and see if you are guilty of some of the serious doctrinal misgivings I mentioned above. If you are, those are the jet fuel that feeds the bitter and hurt of IFB. The insensitive, in your face bully tactics that don’t show the tears, love, patience and training that people need. Sure fire and brimstone, knock the wind of the stiff necked but you must tread the balance ever so tenderly and with all wisdom and humility or you’ll run your flock off. You must hate the sin preach on the mountaintops against it, warn them but ever so tenderly and without critical judgement love your people, be compassionate and care for them as a tender newborn.

  136. Current HAC student says:

    The only reason I chose not to post my name is fear that I’d be expelled, just FYI.

    I am a student at Hyles Anderson College just about to start my freshman year here. I have met many sweet friends and have great admiration for many faculty members (especially Pastor Wilkerson!) I will say the college and church in Hammond preach and teach lots of preferences as doctrine and overemphasize things that do not matter. Not all of the teachers are like this however, mainly the old timers. Obviously the current generation (as Bro. Josh elequoently explained) is rejecting the unbiblical teaching of the 1960’s and returning to doctrine void of Jack Hyles opinion. Praise the Lord! I also am one of these. I believe the Bible has enough awesome substance to learn and preach to others, that harping on opinions is really unnecessary. I’d rather just preach what God said clearly in the Bible rather than add to it what I think He should’ve said.

    I just have one question for you Bro. Teis, and I’m going to be very direct. I’m looking for a direct answer from as many people as would like to comment on this post:

    What is your personally thoughts on the KJV? Is it more inspired or preserved than other versions? Is it the ONLY accurate version? Or simply the one that seems the most accurate in the English language?

    I don’t really care what Jack Hyles said about it, and to be honest I don’t really care that John R. Rice didn’t use it exclusively. I just need to be able to answer the question of why I use the KJV for myself and my future ministry. As of right now, I personally have studied all sorts of different angles and have come to the conclusion that the KJV is the most accurate English translation. Not any more inspired or anything, just a better translation.

  137. Current HAC student says:

    The only reason I chose not to post my name is fear that I’d be expelled, just FYI.

    I am a student at Hyles Anderson College just about to start my freshman year here. I have met many sweet friends and have great admiration for many faculty members (especially Pastor Wilkerson!) I will say the college and church in Hammond preach and teach lots of preferences as doctrine and overemphasize things that do not matter. Not all of the teachers are like this however, mainly the old timers. Obviously the current generation (as Bro. Josh elequoently explained) is rejecting the unbiblical teaching of the 1960’s and returning to doctrine void of Jack Hyles opinion. Praise the Lord! I also am one of these. I believe the Bible has enough awesome substance to learn and preach to others, that harping on opinions is really unnecessary. I’d rather just preach what God said clearly in the Bible rather than add to it what I think He should’ve said.

    I just have one question for you Bro. Teis, and I’m going to be very direct. I’m looking for a direct answer from as many people as would like to comment on this post:

    What is your personally thoughts on the KJV? Is it more inspired or preserved than other versions? Is it the ONLY accurate version? Or simply the one that seems the most accurate in the English language?

    I don’t really care what Jack Hyles said about it, and to be honest I don’t really care that John R. Rice didn’t use it exclusively. I just need to be able to answer the question of why I use the KJV for myself and my future ministry. As of right now, I personally have studied all sorts of different angles and have come to the conclusion that the KJV is the most accurate English translation. Not any more inspired or anything, just a better translation.

  138. I’ve seen this in the past and was once again saw it in my twitter feed so I thought I would post an excerpt from an article written by Dr. Bob Gray of Longview Texas on this subject…

    “Are They Rebels Or A New Generation Of Independents?”

    “The truth be known if you could go back in time to the early in the mid 1900’s we would find that a group very similar to them was arising. The best way to define this generation today is by the men who God used so mightily back then. Those men were tired of the failure of their predecessors and the compromise of their peers. They rebelled. They fought tradition. They wandered the wilderness until they were brought together for the cause. Their differences in background were immense, but their similarities in purpose were colossal. In their time modernism was thriving and fundamentalism was waning. They were not willing to allow either to define them, for they were rebels. They did not do what they were told. Don’t misunderstand, they listened to the older men, but they refused to be caught up in the traditions or the compromise.

    They built great works for God. It was the era of John Rice, Bob Jones, Sr., Lee Roberson, G. B. Vick, Jack Hyles, Lester Roloff, Tom Malone, Dallas Billington and many others. They were true renegades …rebels … mavericks … INDEPENDENTS and God blessed them mightily. They were not the original Independent Baptists, but they WERE the ones who revived it. They were the post war generation.”

  139. Merle Ehle says:

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  140. Jesus Hammer says:

    I love it when preachers are against beards (facial hair). Jesus had a beard = God has a beard! duh.

  141. Robert Hooker says:

    I am so hesitant to write this as I fear it will be dissected and misunderstood, butI have traveled much and been in many churches. There are a few Fundamental Baptist with loud voices that have been harsh, there are a few who have violated that which is right and descent while leading a church. I am afraid that social media has allowed many others, some who have been hurt and are bitter and some who are simply rebels to speak about things that they may have never actually seen or heard. This inclusive negative description of “old” fundamentalism seems to be filled with bitterness and accusation but it has not been my experience as I have traveled and preached. I have found preachers young and old that love the Lord, love their people, love their communities. Imperfect men yes, but men who have studied and read as much as the new generation. Men that may have been careful about what they read, because they knew that no matter how much they should spit out the bones, bones have a tendency to lodge in your throat. Does it not sound a little arrogant when you tell a whole generation of men, most of which you do not know, that they do not study, like the new generation. The old generation may not understand, iPhones, or computers but this does not mean they know less about God than the next tech generation. It seems there is a portion of scripture that talks about men who were ignorant and unlearned but they knew they had been with Jesus. I have seen many good men and I have seen a few men that hurt people deeply. I have seen sincere young men that might dress differently or wear a beard (just a note, I have one) but still had standards and convictions that were Biblically based in distinction of the genders and modesty. I have seen young men that have turned away from all standards, (which I like to term as Biblical principles that give you a better life) because of rebellion, anger, pride, hurt. The thing that hurt me most is reading through this and seeing the anger, venom, pride, and bitterness that seems to be in so many. I am an older Fundamental Baptist. I believe in loving people until they change and loving them if they never change, so it does hurt a little to be labeled as the old fundamentalism that was wrong. The fundamentalism I found in the late 70’s that loved souls and love this young police officer and the fundamentalism where the Love of God was preached every Sunday morning for a year, in the early 80’s, is my fundamentalism. Oh yes, I don’t have drums but I have enough sense to understand it is not the instrument that is wrong but how it is used. I simply don’t have them because there are very few songs that need a marching beat or need the dynamics of cymbals. To me a full set of drums is simply unnecessary and rarely used properly, but if you have an orchestra and drums and you are talented enough to use them rightly, have at it. Can we just say in an article like this that I am IFB and this is what I am doing and I believe God is blessing, rather than using the title that (I believe unintentionally) implies condescension. Finally, if you read carefully many of the comments you find that there is a condemnation of people according to the intent of their heart. They say, these IFB people condemn anyone who does not dress like them, etc. Now you may have heard someone make a comment that may imply that, but there is no way you can know the heart and intent of all others and truthfully you cannot know the heart of the one whom you may have heard, just as I cannot know if someone takes his stand out of true biblical principles or out of rebellion. The number one comment I have heard, directed at me, by younger men who disagree with my stand or who think they do simply because I am older, is that we all just conformed because we were told to do so. This again is normally a young man who was not even born when I made my decisions, but I will agree with them every time. Yes, I was told to but it was by the Holy Spirit of God. You see many of my decisions about music, the language I use or listen to, what I consume or imbibe or even to how we I dress were made before I ever heard a sermon or started attending church, much less an IFB church. I found the IFB was the one that believed most like what I had already decided as God worked in my heart and changed my life. Please be patient with me but I struggle, as I see some younger ones that seem to be heading into the music, dress, etc. that I came out of and it is being done by redefining the scriptures that brought me out in the first place. I am thrilled if God is using you. I am thrilled if you can tell others how God is blessing. I just don’t see the need to present it as though those before you did not do these things. There is good and bad in both generations. Think on this, if the past was so bad and many of the new generation grew up in it, how did you become so incredibly wonderful (not sarcasm), with a heart for souls and heart for the Word of God. Maybe, there was some good in your past after all. Again, I struggle posting this for I really hate becoming part of the social media attack forum but this once I felt maybe we could consider that neither generation is perfect, this present generation would not exist if it were not for the previous and those like me might have given up if our children had not continued to serve the Lord, albeit somewhat differently.

    • I was blessed to become IFB in 1979, when John R. Rice headed The Sword of the Lord. He had written on so many difficult subjects and held high standards, but he was never a King James Version Only advocate. The KJVO heresy has gotten so out of hand that many, even overseas, assume you hold this false belief if you are IFB. This has led to the growth of many independent and conservative Baptist churches that are dead. There is no soul winning. Music is a performance and superficial versus the congregational and meaningful, traditional hymnal music. Members are obviously materialistic with brand name clothing and new vehicles. So, who do you choose: a warm IFB fellowship with a little heresy or a modern, cold IB organization?

    • Ben Watt says:

      Bro. Hooker,

      May I encourage you to read the response to this blog post written by one of the “Old Independent Baptists,” David Teis (Josh’s father).

      And thank you for the investment you made in my life and the lives of so many at HAC. I only ever had you in Preacher’s Power Hour and classes where you filled in, but you earned my respect. Your authenticity and your testimony had a powerful impact on my life.

  142. Harley says:

    One other thing though today Pastor Josh and i mean this with no disrespect to no Pastors I tried to give my all to my church in Australia cause my doc said i could volunteer at the church but not work, i know my spiritual gifts a deacon told me i had proven them but a pastor still did not want me to teach so i got more involved online with a church i can teach the youth online, but cause one staff member didn’t like me that was the Pastors family
    i could not help in ministry in school time i got made the SAO of youth student admin officer i was getting games late to risk assess i could not lie saying they were done 24hrs min-48 legal before the event when some nights i had 20 mins to do em. so i stepped down and then they didn’t like i went with my conviction so i stepped down from beige sao all together then withdrew my membership i think sometimes too its its who’s willing to help and not can i get this person to do it if i pay em when i would clean toilets for free for God at the church but no they preferred to hire someone, so its not only the old its changing on especially some young who have been a IFB since 6

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  144. Anonymous says:

    Here’s the thing, all that you are claiming our forefathers claimed. Before you remove their flag and put up your own… look a little closer – their flag was also established on personal holiness and God’s glory. It seems that you are overreacting to some that were too extreme for your liking. I agree that our history involves some that were not good representatives of the Lord and His church. Yet, now it seems that you have allowed the pendulum to swing to the other side. As you made clear, Hyper-Separatism is a problem, but a lack of discretion when it comes to separation is also a problem… like what you showed on your Facebook account (July 6th) when your family did a spontaneous karoke for the world to see. I was amazed at the lack of discretion, and even the lack of deference that you showed. You are smart, you knew that that jam session would offend the more conservative crowd, but that didn’t seem to matter to you. If this wordly, no holds barred approach is the “new” independent Baptist movement, I won’t be jumping on the bandwagon. Thank you.

  145. Jeff Dollar says:

    It is refreshing to see the new dedication to reading history and theology. It can be assumed that we can expect a swelling in the ranks of the Reformed Baptists in the bear future.

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