Bible Doctrine. A Treatise on the Great Doctrines of the Bible pertaining to God, Angels, Satan, the Church, and the Salvation, Duties and Destiny of Man was a monograph compiled by a committee appointed by the Mennonite General Conference, Daniel Kauffman, Editor. Published by Mennonite Publishing House, Scottdale, Pa., 1914. This volume of 701 pages represented the most extensive effort of the Mennonite Church (MC) in the sphere of Bible doctrine. At the 1911 sessions of Mennonite General Conference (MC) 10 writers were appointed to "prepare a work on Christian doctrine, setting forth, from a Scriptural standpoint, those things most commonly believed among us: A. D. Wenger, Fentress, Virginia.; D. J. Johns, Goshen, Indiana; George R. Brunk, Denbigh, Virginia; A. P. Heatwole, Waynesboro, Virginia; Noah H. Mack, New Holland, Pennsylvania; D. D. Miller, Middlebury, Indiana; D. H. Bender, Hesston, Kansas; S. E. Allgyer, West Liberty, Ohio; J. E. Hartzler, Goshen, Indiana; Daniel Kauffman, Scottdale, Pennsylvania." (from the Preface).
An examination of the work reveals that each of the above except A. P. Heatwole wrote one or more chapters; the following additional men also wrote one or more chapters: J. N. Brubacher, David Burkholder, J. D. Charles, S. F. Coffman, David Garber, J. S. Hartzler, L. J. Heatwole, J. R. Shank, J. B. Smith, and Paul E. Whitmer. The book contained much doctrinal material found in standard Christian theological works, and in addition has sections devoted to "Christian Ordinances" (baptism, communion, footwashing, devotional covering, Christian salutation, anointing with oil, and marriage) and to "Christian Principles" (including discussions on nonconformity to the world, non-resistance, the oath, secret societies, and life insurance). It was a good solid treatise on Bible doctrine as understood by the Mennonite Church, although it was more the codification of a traditional point of view in matters of faith than the fruits of original systematic or exegetical study or of historical research in the Anabaptist-Mennonite faith. Early Christian writers were referred to a number of times (Augustine, Clement, Cyprian, Eusebius, Irenaeus, Jerome, Justin, Polycarp, Tertullian), but the several writers betrayed no acquaintance with Anabaptist writers. Menno's views on baptism, however, are quoted from his writings.
One of the factors which led to the production of a new doctrinal volume, Doctrines of the Bible, 1928, Daniel Kauffman, Editor, was the fact that in the old volume some of the material and some of the writers were no longer considered satisfactory. The new book, Doctrines of the Bible. A Brief Discussion of the Teachings of God’s Word (631 pp.), was completely rewritten and somewhat shortened, but again published by order of the Mennonite General Conference. Daniel Kauffman this time wrote all but two of the 62 chapters, the others being written by D. H. Bender. It went through a second edition in 1929. Both volumes had a wide circulation and great influence in the Mennonite Church (MC), where they were considered the standard doctrinal authority for the church.
|Author(s)||John C Wenger|
Cite This Article
Wenger, John C. "Bible Doctrine (Monograph)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1954. Web. 23 Jul 2014. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Bible_Doctrine_(Monograph)&oldid=75613.
Wenger, John C. (1954). Bible Doctrine (Monograph). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 23 July 2014, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Bible_Doctrine_(Monograph)&oldid=75613.
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