Difference in Scripture references?

Discussion in 'The Confession of Faith' started by reaganmarsh, Jun 13, 2017.

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  1. reaganmarsh

    reaganmarsh Puritan Board Senior

    Greetings PB brethren,

    I'm doing research on Ch. 9 (paragraphs 1-3,5) of the 1689 for a writing project, and in comparing LBC to WCF, I noticed that there are some minor differences in both verbiage and Scripture proofs utilized.

    Here are the differences:

    Para. 1: LBC adds verbiage of "and power of acting upon choice" and deletes prooftexts Isa 7.11-12, Jn 5.40, Jas 4.7.

    Para. 2: LBC verbiage identical; and deletes prooftexts Gen 1.26,31, Col 3.10, Gen 2.16-17.

    Para. 3: LBC verbiage identical; and deletes prooftexts Rom 3.9-10,12,23, Jn 6.44-45, Jn 3.3,5-6, 1 Cor 2.14, Tit 3.3-5 (WCF also moves Eph 2.1-5 to just after "dead in sin" as their #6, and adds Col 2.13).

    Para. 5: LBC deletes "do"; and deletes prooftext Heb 12.23.

    My question is: why the deletions and additions, other than normal editing processes? Can anyone here point me to something explaining the rationale?

    Play nice here; don't be snarky and say things like, "It's because Baptists aren't as biblical," etc. Ha ha! :lol:
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2017
  2. TylerRay

    TylerRay Puritan Board Senior


    For clarification, you are comparing the LBC with the Westminster Confession, no?
  3. Contra_Mundum

    Contra_Mundum Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger Staff Member

    You may have missed a couple other pronounced verbal changes,
    e.g. Para.2, after superscript.2,
    LBC: "... but yet was unstable, so that..."
    WCF: "... but yet, mutably, so that..."​

    (see here, tabular comparison: http://www.proginosko.com/docs/wcf_lbcf.html#WCF9)

    Nor am I seeing the same difference in Para.5 that you are (first word is changed, The to This); but no "do" in either.
    [edit: I do find "do" in the WCF on the reformed dot org site linked below)

    The OPC has added prooftexts (see here: http://opc.org/documents/CFLayout.pdf), which seems to be the version you are comparing with the LBC. Those original WCF proofs for Para.1 appear to me unadjusted in the LBC:
    The OPC Confession and the WCF have a prooftext superscript at "averse to good," whereas the LBC puts the next prooftext mark at "dead in sin." The result is that the WCF and the OPC Confession have Eph.2:1,5 at the same place as the LBC; but with Col.2:13 added in the OPC Confession.

    There may yet be differences in the prooftexts, as for instance comparing Para.2 in both originals, the LBC (at the above link) lists but one each for superscripts 2 & 3. The WCF original looks to have at least two texts per superscript locations.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2017
  4. KMK

    KMK Administrator Staff Member

    If you are comparing between LBC, WCF, and/or Savoy, I recommend Renihan's "True Confessions". It is more than just a tabular comparison.
  5. reaganmarsh

    reaganmarsh Puritan Board Senior

    Thanks for your sharp eye, Bruce. Perhaps I need to reconsider my copies of the LBC and WCF, as several of the differences you note are missing in my books.

    Tyler, yes, I am comparing LBC and WCF. I'll edit the OP to reflect it. My apologies, there, as I was typing quickly -- apparently that didn't make it from brain to screen!

    I'll have to look into that book. Thank you!
  6. MW

    MW Puritan Board Doctor

    It seems the phrase, "and power of acting upon choice," is the only material addition, and it comes from the Savoy.

    John Owen (Works 10:116) wrote: "We grant man, in the substance of all his actions, as much power, liberty, and freedom as a mere created nature is capable of. We grant him to be free in his choice from all outward coaction, or inward natural necessity, to work according to election and deliberation, spontaneously embracing what seemeth good unto him."

    In philosophical discussions, this power is often used to demonstrate there is a creaturely limitation on human freewill, and specifically shows that it functions rationally, not "willy-nilly" as we might say. It has also been used to deny that the will itself is genuinely free by those who argue that rational motivation necessitates the will.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2017
  7. reaganmarsh

    reaganmarsh Puritan Board Senior

    Very helpful. Thank you!
  8. MW

    MW Puritan Board Doctor

    The 1677 edition on 9.2 reads "... but yet was mutable, so that..."

    The Confession in Thomas Crosby, History of the English Baptists, 1740, reads "...but yet was unstable, so that..." That is the earliest reference I could find.

    It may have been a typographical error. I cannot think of any theological reason for the substitution, unless it was to show that man was created with some weakness, which does not fit within a reformed anthropology.
  9. TylerRay

    TylerRay Puritan Board Senior

    Interestingly, the Philadelphia Confession (1742 revision of LBC) uses the but yet was mutable language.
  10. reaganmarsh

    reaganmarsh Puritan Board Senior


    This has been a most helpful thread.

    Thank you so much for your replies!
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