A unique Baptist group known for its hyper-Calvinistic theology and conservative practices, emphasizing predestination and the division of humanity into two seeds.
The Two-Seed-in-the-Spirit Predestinarian Baptists are a distinct group within the larger Baptist denomination, known for their specific theological stance which is sometimes referred to as Hyper-Calvinism. This doctrine implies a strong emphasis on predestination, teaching that people are either part of the ‘elect’ (seed of God) or the non-elect (seed of the Devil).
Origins and Development
The movement’s origins trace back to Elder Daniel Parker in the early 19th century. After Parker’s death in 1845, the group experienced its first major schism. Central to their belief is the idea of “Two Seeds,” a concept introduced by Parker and later supplemented by works from other leaders like Elder Thomas P. Dudley.
Practices and Beliefs
The group practices baptism by immersion and observes the Lord’s Supper with foot washing. Their services are known for being extremely conservative, rejecting innovations and maintaining traditional forms of worship. One commentator noted that this group was so strictly Calvinistic that they might exclude John Calvin himself from their ranks.
Historical Presence and Decline
In the early 20th century, the group had a notable presence, with several churches across the United States. However, over the years, the number of adherents and churches has significantly declined. By 2003, there were only about four remaining churches of the Two-Seed-in-the-Spirit Predestinarian Baptists, with approximately 80 members. These churches were located in Texas, Indiana, and Tennessee.
The Two-Seed-in-the-Spirit Predestinarian Baptist Church has been noted in American cultural references, including a mention by novelist Kurt Vonnegut Jr. in his novel “God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater.”