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Saturday, July 29, 2006

Two-seedism of Daniel Parker

Elder Daniel Parker (1781-1844) figured prominently in the early history of the American "missions/anti-missions" controversy, and was also a pioneer who helped open the Texas frontier. His Pilgrim Regular Baptist Church of the Predestinarian Faith and Order still stands as the oldest Baptist church in the state of Texas. He is remembered for formulating and promoting a religious idea often known as Two-seedism, which is now most often viewed as a religious curiosity. For a time it was quite a source of dissension among "anti-mission" Baptists in parts of the U.S.

"In brief, he taught that God had an external seed, and the devil an external seed; and that God gave to Adam a seed which we call the body; that our bodies which we inherit from Adam are simply houses for God's and the devil's children to live in. When we die, if God's eternal seed is in us it returns to him; but if the devil's seed it returns to him, while the body returns to dust never to be resurrected." (From J. H. Grime, History of Middle Tennessee Baptists, 1902)

"Come, my reader, let us reason together a moment. You may think my doctrine wretched -- but think again, is it scripturally and experimentally reasonable to believe, but that there are sinners lost? Are these lost sinners the creatures of God by creation? Is it not more reasonable to believe they have sprung from Satan, than from the Divine Being? As I think you believe me, that God never created any one for destruction, is it not more to the glory and honor of God, to believe that he will punish Satan in his own seed., than in beings, which he himself had made, and Satan had got possession of? Does God Possess more love and mercy than wisdom and power? Does, he, as God, want to save more than he will or can save? How can these things be, and he be a God of infinite power and wisdom? Think of these things, and if they fail to bring you to this truth, then I request you to answer, at least in your own mind, these questions I have proposed, with the evidence that have produced, satisfactorily, in another way; for they all mean something, and the truth is what we ought to know and practice. Perhaps you are ready to inquire, what benefit can arise from the belief of this, should it be a truth? I answer, truth exalts the Divine Being, humbles his saints, and defies the enemies of God. And amongst all the truths that appear, this is best calculated to answer and defeat the Arminian errors, and Universalian false basis. Establish the saints, and prevent controversy, as far as it is believed, while, instead of its preventing saints from preaching to, and praying for sinners, if it is believed aright, stimulates them to their duty." -- Parker in Views on the Two Seeds (originally typed by Ben H. Irwin, and made available courtesy of Tom Adams and Hoyt Sparks)

Some comments on Two Seed doctrine by Silas Durand

Two-seedism by James F. Poole

See also
The Records of an early Texas Baptist church for minutes of the Pilgrim Church 1833-1847

2 comments:

clinch64 said...

Robert,

Is the Pilgrim church building still used at all?

Neil

R. L. Vaughn said...

Yes. The Pilgrim church still meets there on the 3rd Sunday of each month.

The church no longer holds the two-seed idea, and is now considered an "absolute predestinarian" Primitive Baptist Church.