In light of recent events in the culture and worldwide, Ramsey Baptist Church (RBC) is making its official statement of religious exemption. RBC is affiliated with Converge, formally the General Baptist Conference. As a voluntary affiliate of converge, RBC agrees with the Affirmation of Faith of Converge which includes such paragraphs: The Trinity We believe that there is one living and true God, eternally existing in three persons, that these are equal in every divine perfection, and that they execute distinct but harmonious offices in the work of creation, providence and redemption. God the Father We believe in God, the Father, an infinite, personal spirit, perfect in holiness, wisdom, power and love. We believe that He concerns Himself mercifully in the affairs of all people, that He hears and answers prayer, and that He saves from sin and death all who come to Him through Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ We believe in Jesus Christ, God's only begotten Son, conceived by the Holy Spirit. We believe in His virgin birth, sinless life, miracles and teachings. We believe in His substitutionary atoning death, bodily resurrection, ascension into heaven, perpetual intercession for His people, and personal visible return to earth. The Holy Spirit We believe in the Holy Spirit who came forth from the Father and Son to convict the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment, and to regenerate, sanctify, and empower all who believe in Jesus Christ. We believe that the Holy Spirit indwells every believer in Christ, and that He is an abiding helper, teacher and guide.
In addition to what is stated above, RBC also agrees with the 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith (1689 LBCF) in these areas:
In the beginning it pleased God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, for the manifestation of the glory of his eternal power, wisdom, and goodness, to create or make the world, and all things therein, whether visible or invisible, in the space of six days, and all very good.
After God had made all other creatures, he created man, male and female, with reasonable and immortal souls, rendering them fit unto that life to God for which they were created; being made after the image of God, in knowledge, righteousness, and true holiness; having the law of God written in their hearts, and power to fulfil it, and yet under a possibility of transgressing, being left to the liberty of their own will, which was subject to change.
We at RBC take this seriously and it is the basis of our world view. That all is from God as He is the Alpha and the Omega. We affirm the 6 literal day account of creation, and we affirm all mankind being created in the image of God. We completely reject the theory of evolution as we believe that when one adopts chaos as the source of all creation, chaos is the end result in behavior by man. We also reject it on the grounds that it denies God as the source of all creation and the one who created all including time and space. This is the biblical worldview. Our Triune God created man according to His image and likeness. As a result, we do affirm respect, dignity, and love to all mankind as God has defined it and designed it. Therefore, we will not allow the culture to define the terms respect, dignity and love but rather we uphold these truths according to Gods Holy standards and we do not use that word, Holy, lightly. In addition to the statements above, we also affirm with the 1689 LBCF: “This covenant is revealed in the gospel; first of all to Adam in the promise of salvation by the seed of the woman, and afterwards by farther steps, until the full discovery thereof was completed in the New Testament..” Covenant Theology is our hermeneutical approach to scripture, and we believe that this is the most consistent approach to scripture. A long history of the church, especially that of the reformed and puritan tradition, affirmed and applied this hermeneutic as well. As we hold this statement to be true, we affirm that the Noahic covenant was not a covenant just between God and Noah or God and Israel but that it was a Covenant between God and all of mankind (Genesis 9). As a result, we value life and justice in the pursuit of holiness. For this reason, we do not deny Covid-19 and its variants, and we do not deny how serious Covid-19 symptoms could get and do get. However, holding to the biblical worldview based on the orthodox, historical, covenantal confession of the church, we make these applications for religious exemption of any mandates that attempts to inject any unwanted substances.
We believe in the freedom of conscience and no civil magistrate or employer has any right to demand that any person violate their conscience. Freedom of conscience is something that has not only been cherished by Christians for 2000 years but something that has been cherished in the United States and is protected by the Constitution of the United States of America. Repeatedly the Holy Scriptures remind us to have a clear conscience and freedom of conscience. We read in Romans 14: “22 The faith which you have, have as your own conviction before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves. 23 But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from faith; and whatever is not from faith is sin.” New American Standard Bible: (Ro 14:22–23). We recognize that there many who have no doubts or violation of conscience when it comes to the covid-19 vaccination but there are many who do. There are many reasons why this is a violation of our conscience. A demand to inject people with a substance that has zero long term studies is unreasonable. Wisdom demands more than just “do what we say” and for that reason, many find it unwise and unreasonable to be injected with a substance with no long-term studies. The Confession stated above means we believe in a world of purpose and order. This also means we demand reason to be used and applied. Therefore, it is well within the scope of reason to demand a long-term study before a vaccination is injected and like already stated, does not exist. Many have legit concerns for ones own personal health and the health of their family as there are credible studies that show there are serious negative health effects. A mandate puts a follower of Christ in a situation where they have doubt and therefore, the civil magistrates and some employers are demanding Christians to sin. In addition, because there are credible studies to the negative health effects, you may be bringing harm to individuals.
Another conscientious objection based on the grounds of our confession is that any medical mandates made by civil magistrates or employers is an abuse of power not only according to the constitution but to the very faith we affirm. We believe God instituted three offices of government; 1. The Family 2. The Church 3. Civil Magistrates. All issues concerning medical help being applied to persons falls under the decisions of the first office listed; the family. For any civil government to attempt to do otherwise is a violation of the God ordained office the civil magistrate holds. We also believe that any employer trying to place themselves in a position of authority that belongs to the family is an abuse of power and they have zero ground to make such demands.
The last point is the greatest reason for many faithful followers of Christ; the greatest conscientious objection based on our confession is an objection against any mandated substance that used aborted fetal stem cells for testing, manufacturing or as an additive in the substance itself. So far, all Covid-19 vaccinations fall under one or more of those principles. For this reason, many find this vaccination to be the work of evil and because we affirm the Biblical worldview as defined above, this is a serious violation of the Noahic covenant that we are still obligated to and a serious attack on God Himself as murdered image bearers were used, in some degree or another, for the creation or manufacturing of the Covid-19 vaccination.
We understand that there may be objections to our religious rights and claims. One objection is that if we truly objected to the use or presence of aborted fetal stem cells that we would apply this to other common vaccinations that many people already have. We reject this objection on the grounds that many take vaccinations in ignorance or lack of conviction at the time of receiving such vaccination. It is not up to the civil magistrates or employers to decide when one is convicted on something being right or wrong. Some object to our religious rights and claims by having a “two kingdom” view or a false and unamerican idea of what “separation of Church and state” means. We reject this on the grounds that we affirm a living and active Kingdom of God that we belong to, and we do not separate the temporal, physical realm with the spiritual realm. Last, we want to state that any civil magistrate or employer demanding any person to violate their conscience with a mandate that forces the injection of any substance is an act of tyranny. This statement is being submitted to inform this reader that we will not be bullied, intimidated or threated into submission to help sinful mans irrational fear and to coddle their superficial feelings. Our health, religious and constitutional rights are not dependent on these superficial emotions. This statement serves as an act of grace to inform the reader that they are violating the constitutional and religious rights of the person who is submitting this and we respectfully but firmly encourage your actions to be reconsidered. The next step will be legal action. We do not oppose these mandates based on politics or any political parties but for the reason listed above. I ____________________, declare this mandate, and any other mandate that violates my faith or conscience to go against my religious affirmation of faith which makes this mandate unconstitutional and illegal.