World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Soul competency

Article Id: WHEBN0005578738
Reproduction Date:

Title: Soul competency  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Baptists, Baptist, Baptists in the history of separation of church and state, John Clarke (Baptist minister), Baptist beliefs
Collection: Baptist, Christian Theology
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Soul competency

Soul competency is a Christian theological perspective on the accountability of each person before God. According to this view, neither one's family relationships, church membership, or ecclesiastical or religious authorities can affect salvation of one's soul from damnation. Instead, under this view, each person is responsible to God for his or her own personal faith in Jesus Christ and his death and resurrection.


  • Baptist view 1
    • Lack of creeds 1.1
  • External links 2
  • References 3

Baptist view

The basic concept of individual eternal security, as Baptists refer to soul competency, is that, in matters of religion, each person has the liberty to choose what his/her conscience or soul dictates is right, and is responsible to no one but God for the decision that is made.

A person may then choose to be a Baptist, a member of another Christian denomination, an adherent to another world religion, or to choose no religious belief system, and neither the church, nor the government, nor family or friends may either make the decision or compel the person to choose otherwise. In addition, a person may change his/her mind over time.

According to Francis Wayland, president of Brown University (1827–1855), Roger Williams, established the commonwealth of Rhode Island on the fundamental principle of "perfect freedom in religious concerns; or, as he so well designated it, 'SOUL LIBERTY.' No man of his age had so clear conceptions of the rights of conscience as the founder of Rhode Island, and no one had ever carried them so honestly to their legitimate conclusions. I go further: no one has yet been able either to take from or add to the principles of religious liberty which he so simply and powerfully set forth. They stand as imperishable monuments to his fame, like the obelisks of Luxor, on which the chiseling of every figure is now just as sharply defined as when, three thousand years since, they were left by the hand of their designer." [1]

Lack of creeds

In line with soul competency, the Southern Baptist Convention has no official creeds. They do, however, have the Baptist Faith and Message, a statement of the consensus of participating conventions.

External links

  • Southern Baptist Convention on Soul competency


  1. ^ Francis Wayland, Notes on the Principles and Practices of Baptist Churches (New York: Sheldon, 1857), 135.
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Hawaii eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.