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This is a pretty good entry! I do wonder if we need to retitle it Baptists, in line with some of the other belief-group headings (note Anabaptists, Separatists, Puritans in the text of this very article). I removed [Expository Sermons]? from the list of Baptist distinctive characteristics. That is a characteristic of almost all churches. Most churches practice some form of linear readings/exposition that move through scripture in a sequential fashion. --MichaelTinkler

Actually, [Expository Sermons]? are not just a sermon spoken by a minister to the congregation, as is implied by Michael above. Expository sermons are those which are not written down, or rehearsed before hand. There may be notes about specific meanings of words, or possible explanatory examples, but not the full text of the sermon. Prior to modern recording devices, expository sermons could not be published since the verbatim text did not exist anywhere, however notes of listeners might be combined to have a rough transcript of the sermon. I do not know of any denominations that encourage this type of 'off the cuff' preaching style other than Baptists.
Oh, dear. Is that what I've been listening to in the Catholic church, thinking it was called a 'homily'? Believe me, the spirit moves all sorts, not just Baptists. Or maybe I should say that all sorts let the spirit move them. I will say that I've never heard this use for 'expository,' though it wouldnt' surprise me.--MichaelTinkler
Hm.. I thought the point of a homily was that it was short, (only ten minutes or so). I certainly know some preachers don't think an expository sermon is time-limited. (although almost all stop before three hours, very few stop after ten minutes)
yes, homilies are short, which is why we only have to worry about beating the Methodists to the Sunday buffets...

Some histories of American religion I've read make it clear that Baptists had a serious influence from Calvinism theologically, though not necessarily in terms of church order. --MichaelTinkler

I'm not sure which title is better. In Naming conventions it says the singular form is preferred over the plural (horse instead of horses), but I would interpret that as applying to nouns. I see Baptist use as an adjective more than a noun, but Baptists is clearly a collective noun. Perhaps best taken up on Naming conventions/Talk --Alan Millar

In either case, the singular noun and adjective are both "Baptist", and that's clearly the most useful link. If you're entering a biography of some clergyman, it's clearly easier to type "...was a Baptist minister from..." than the awkward piping that would be required with a plural title. This should be a no-brainer. --LDC

A good point, but given that we're typing in English, no-brainerdom is somewhat remote. Nomenclature is a big issue, Lee, and the fact that there is disagreement shows that there are brainful opinions on the subject. I'd love to shift Catholicism to Catholic, myself, but someone started the entry with the abstract noun. Wikipedia is full of inconsistencies. --MichaelTinkler
"Baptist" and "Catholic," while singular nouns, are nouns meaning something other than the subject you want to talk about (i.e., the Baptist church or Baptist doctrine, or the Catholic church or Catholic doctrine), namely, people. That's why I would favor either something like Catholicism or Catholic church and, since something analogous to the former is not available for the Baptist church, just Baptist church. But these are just my initial thoughts. --LMS

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Last edited September 5, 2001 6:55 am by 209.2.178.xxx (diff)