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Baptists do not have a central governing authority, and Baptist beliefs are not completely consistent from one Baptist church to another. However, Baptists do hold some common beliefs among almost all Baptist churches. These would include beliefs about one God, the virgin birth, the impeccability, miracles, vicarious atoning death, burial, and bodily resurrection of Christ, the need for salvation (although the understanding of means for achieving it may differ at times), divine grace, the Church, the Kingdom of God, last things (Jesus Christ will return personally and visibly in glory to the earth; the dead will be raised; and Christ will judge everyone in righteousness), evangelism and missions.
- Biblical authority (Matt 24:35; 1Pet 1:23; 2Tim 3:16-3:17)
- Autonomy of the local church (Matt 18:15-18:17; 1Cor 6:1-6:3)
- Priesthood of all believers (1Pet 2:5-2:9; 1Tim 2:5)
- Two ordinances (believer's baptism and the Lord's Supper) (Acts 2:41-2:47; 1Cor 11:23-11:32)
- Individual soul liberty (Rom 14:5-14:12)
- Saved and Baptized church membership (Acts 2:41–2:47; 1Cor 12:12; 2Cor 6:14; Eph 4:3)
- Two offices of the church (pastor and deacon) (1Tim 3:1-3:13)
Baptists practice believer's baptism and the Lord's Supper (communion) as the two acts of faith-obedience to the example and commands given by Christ for Christians (Matthew 28:19; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26). Most Baptists call them "ordinances" (meaning "obedience to a command that Christ has given us") instead of "sacraments" (activities God uses to impart salvation or a means of grace to the participant). Therefore, historic Baptist theology considers that no saving grace is conveyed by either ordinance and that original sin is not washed away in baptism. Baptists have traditionally believed that they are symbols.
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- Cummins, David L. This Day in Baptist History 2. Greenville, SC: BJU Press, 2000.
- Roberts, Dr. E. Al (2011). A Disparity in Doctrine and Theology: Baptist Versus Mormon Doctrine and Theology. WestBow Press. p. 15. ISBN 1449712118.
- Sacrament versus Ordinance - Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS)[permanent dead link][better source needed]
- "Lutherans and Baptists: What is the difference between confessional Lutheran beliefs and the beliefs of Baptists?". WELS. 2015-03-09. Retrieved January 27, 2018.
- Crowley, John (1998). Primitive Baptists of the Winegrass South 1815-present. University Press of Florida. ISBN 0-8130-1640-1. Retrieved 31 January 2012.
- Cassada, Mary Eva (June 8, 1991). "'Primitive' rituals are few, simple". The Free Lance-Star. Associated Press. p. 12. Retrieved 2012-05-24.
- Eisenstadt, Todd (August 21, 1987). "Baptist Group Looks To The Old, New". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2012-05-24.