Association Information
Baptist Missionary Association Of Mississippi

Doctrinal Statement

Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi

The churches of this Association heartily subscribe to and agree to defend and promulgate the historic Missionary Baptist Faith and Practice, the interpretation of which is tersely stated as follows:

  1. The Trinity of God.
  2. The infallible and plenary verbal inspiration of the Scripture.
  3. The Biblical account of creation.
  4. The personality of Satan.
  5. Hereditary and total depravity of man in his natural state involving his fall in Adam.
  6. The virgin birth and deity of Jesus Christ.
  7. Christ’s blood atonement for fallen man. We believe Christ died for the sins of the whole world (John 1:29; I Tim. 2:4-6; Heb. 2:9) that through His blood, atonement for sin is made without respect of persons. Anyone who will exercise repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 20:21) will be saved. Although all men can be saved, some will reject God’s redemption by exercise of their free will.
  8. His bodily resurrection and ascension back to his Father.
  9. The Person and work of the Holy Spirit.
  10. Justification before God by faith without any admixture of works. All such justified persons are in the family of God.
  11. Separation of God’s children from the world.
  12. Water baptism (immersion) to be administered to believers only and by Divine authority as given to missionary Baptist churches.
  13. The Lord’s Supper, a church ordinance to be administered to baptized believers only in scriptural church capacity.
  14. Eternal security of the believer.
  15. The establishment of a visible church by Christ Himself during His personal ministry on earth; and His churches are not now, nor have they ever been, universal or invisible.
  16. Worldwide missions according to the Great Commission which Christ gave His church. (Matthew 28:19, 20).
  17. The perpetuity of missionary Baptist churches from Christ’s day on earth until His second coming.
  18. The right of scriptural churches to be held as equal units, in their associated capacities, with equal rights and privileges for all.
  19. The subjection of all scriptural associational assemblies and their committees to the will of the churches, so that they shall forever remain as servants of the churches originating them.
  20. The separation of the Lord’s Church from all so-called churches or church alliances which advocate, practice, or uphold heresies and other human innovations, which are not in harmony with the Word of God. Open communion, alien baptism, pulpit affiliation with heretical churches, modernism, modern tongues movement, and all kindred evils arising from these practices are unscriptural.
  21. The only valid baptism is that administered by the authority of a scriptural missionary Baptist church. Any so-called Baptist church which knowingly receives alien baptism, habitually practices this or other evils as those listed in statement 20 cannot be a scriptural Baptist church, nor can its ordinances remain valid.
  22. The personal, bodily and imminent return of Christ to earth.
  23. The bodily resurrection of the dead.
  24. The reality of heaven, involving Divine assurance of eternal happiness for the redeemed of God.
  25. The reality of hell, involving everlasting punishment of the incorrigible wicked.
  26. We believe in the absolute separation of Church and State.
  27. Biblical Marriage - God, having created male and female, instituted their union in marriage. God designed marriage as the covenantal relationship of one biological man and one biological woman for a lifetime. It is God's unique gift to reveal the union between Christ and His church. God provides in marriage the context for the only appropriate sexual desires and behaviors and the only means for procreation of the human race. The God-ordained institution of marriage is not subject to redefinition or re-interpretation by human means or practice. Forgiveness and reconciliation are found in God's atonement which is without respect of persons. (Genesis 1:27-28; Genesis 2:18-25; Matthew 19:3-9; Leviticus 18:22-25; Proverbs 5:18-19, Mark 10:6-9, Romans 1:18-32, 1 Corinthians 6:9-11, 16; Ephesians 5:22-23; Hebrews 13:4)

NOTE: The following statements are not to be binding upon the churches already affiliated with this association, nor to require adoption by churches petitioning this body for privileges of cooperation, nor to be a test of fellowship between brethren or churches. However, they do express the preponderance of opinion among the churches of the Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi.

  1. We believe in the premillenial return of Christ to earth, which He shall literally reign in peace upon the earth for a thousand years. Rev. 20:4-6
  2. We believe the Scriptures to teach two resurrections: the first of the righteous at Christ’s coming; the second of the wicked dead at the close of the thousand year reign. I Thess. 4:13-17; Rev. 20:4-6, 12-15.
  3. Whereas most of our people believe in and use the King James Version as the Word of God, we ask that any speakers at any associational meeting, camp or conference sponsored by any Department of the association use the KJV.

History Of The BMA Of Mississippi

The history of Baptists in Mississippi dates back to 1791. The events that transpired from then until the present day help us to understand and acknowledge our heritage of Mississippi Missions. Had it not been for our forefathers who undertook dangerous journeys and championed overwhelming odds in search for religious freedom we would not have celebrated our Bi- Centennial year in 1991.

History has shown us that in 1791, Richard Curtis Jr. with a group of 35 Baptists embarked on a journey by boat from South Carolina heading westward in search of a place where they could be free from religious persecution. Near the end of a long and treacherous journey they found themselves traveling south down the Mississippi River. Along this journey they reached Cole Creek which empties into the Mississippi river about twenty miles north of Natchez. Turning up Cole Creek they discovered an ideal location to stake their claim and establish a new community.

Acknowledging the providence shown by the Creator, this new community immediately established themselves and started conducting church services in the home of John Stampley. It was during this time that the congregation was organized into a New Testament church. Pastor Richard Curtis, Jr. led in the organization service of Salem Baptist Church. Little did they know what blessings from God would flow to others as a result of their effort. Much like the Psalmist, the members of Salem Baptist Church desired a house for God where they could worship, and in 1805 the first church building was constructed.

Most historians agree that the establishment and organization of Salem Baptist Church was the beginning of the Baptist work in Mississippi. Just as the churches of the Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi can trace their lineage by doctrine back to the shores of Galilee and the First Baptist Church in Jerusalem, we acknowledge that our history passes through the congregation of Salem Baptist Church on Cole Creek in 1791. In 1800 Farmington Baptist Church of Corinth, Mississippi was organized and is the oldest church listed in the Baptist Missionary Association of America Directory and handbook. Antioch Baptist Church of Soso, Mississippi was organized in 1805 and is recognized as the second oldest BMA church in Mississippi. Through God’s blessing these two churches continue their ministries today.

In 1806 the first Mississippi Baptist Association was formed. Through our years of mission history the Lord has kept the Mississippi Baptist work strong, enabling us to continue sharing God’s plan of eternal salvation and building New Testament Churches.

Along the way Mississippi Baptists have faced unique and trying circumstances. In 1950 a group of Baptist churches from several states separated from the “American Baptist Association” and organized the “North American Baptist Association”. The Baptist Churches from Mississippi involved in the separation became the “North American Baptist Association of Churches of Mississippi”. In 1969 the “North American Baptist Association of America” was renamed the “Baptist Missionary Association of America.”

Since 1939, the Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi (the current name) has been blessed to have eight (9) Directors of Missions. These directors who served our historical churches in the leadership role of Missions throughout the state are as follows:

  • Bro. Ollie Parker (1939 – 1952 and 1955 – 1957)
  • Bro. H.L. Gardner (1953 – 1954)
  • Bro. B.J. Knight (1954 – 1955)
  • Bro. Vern D. Holifield (1957 – 1965 and 1971 – 1974)
  • Bro. Eugene Murphy (1965 – 1971)
  • Bro. Arnold Knight (1974 – 1990)
  • Bro. Stephen Howell (1990 – 1994)
  • Bro. Rayburn Freeman (1994 – March 2011)
  • Bro. Larry Geraldson (October 2011 – Present)

In 1957, under the leadership of mission director Bro. Vern D. Holifield, the Revolving Loan Fund was created. Together with missions the Revolving Loan Fund has remained under the direction of the Missions director.

God has truly blessed the mission efforts of the Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi Missions Department. During its history, the State Missions Department has seen more than 100 mission projects organized into New Testament Churches. The Baptist Missionary Association of Mississippi stands in awe, knowing that all this was made possible by God’s providence and His blessings.

Since the humble beginning of the first Mississippi Baptist Association in 1806, the number of churches has increased while remaining united and strong with one cause: That is sharing the precious gospel of Jesus Christ worldwide.

Mississippi Baptists Then & Now

Mississippi Baptist Then & Now

A Brief History Of Missionary Baptists In Mississippi

The Baptists in Mississippi have a long rich history of faith, labor and love. Through the years, there have been so many individuals that have struggled and sacrificed to bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the people of Mississippi.

If you are interested in learning more about the long history of the Baptists of Mississippi, download the PDF version of the Mississippi Baptist Then & Now book.


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