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Independent Baptists are a particularly cranky fundamentalist branch of unaffiliated Baptists. The origins of the Independent Baptist movement are sketchy but the origin is believed to be local congregations who left the conservative Southern Baptist Convention and the slightly more moderate American Baptist Association over perceived liberalism and modernism in the two largest Baptist denominations. If those two are too "liberal" one can imagine where Independent Baptists lie on the theological spectrum.
Independent Baptist churches almost universally hold to the following beliefs and practices:
- King James Only.
- Baptism by immersion only.
- Separatism: extreme criticism of the Roman Catholic Church, Southern Baptist Convention, megachurches, Pentecostals, Promise Keepers, and just about anyone else other than fundamentalist Independent Baptists. They maintain a distance from and suspicion of the broader evangelical movement.
- Hell-fire and damnation sermons. Independent Baptist churches are fond of sermons on the threat of hell. They criticize the broader evangelical movement for emphasizing a "love gospel" and downplaying God's wrath and judgment.
- Sermons are always followed by an "altar call" offering salvation to the wicked sinner.
- Opposition to any form of modern music in the church, such as Christian Rock and charismatic "praise" choruses. Even Southern Gospel is regarded with some suspicion.
- Sexism and legalism: a prayer meeting before the sermon will typically be separate prayer meetings with the women and men in different rooms. Men are exhorted to have short hair and wear plain suits, women are exhorted to wear their hair in buns and to wear long dresses. Jeans and shorts are bad for both genders. Opposition to members playing cards, attending movies, public swimming pools, listening to any music other than traditional gospel hymns, and dancing. Church is to be attended Sunday-Friday (2x Sunday, 2x Wednesday). Attendance at Christian Concerts and Fine Arts Series is also mandatory. Even ONE missed church service or Fine Arts event will result in eternal Hell.
- You mean besides yet more prayer and God-praise?
- Tithing. Hand over thy money or else, bud!
- Complete independence of the local church. Independent Baptists are not a "denomination" per se. Individual local congregations are the only institutions recognized.
- Though the Baptists began in 17th-century England, many Independent Baptists hold to a myth of "Baptist successionism", whereby modern Baptist congregations are said to derive from the very earliest Christian churches by a succession of shadow churches outside of Roman Catholicism. While there were groups of Western Christians independent of the Catholic Church, they were fiercely persecuted in the West and were generally doctrinally rather unlike any modern Western church.
- As with most things indie, touts itself as better and more intellectual than the mainstream, which has "sold out" in their opinion.
- Child Abuse: IFB's believe at least one of the two following statements: 1. That there is no such thing as "Child Abuse" because the Bible "justifies" it. 2. That child abuse should be "legal" in the United States. Residential schools like New Beginnings Girls Academy have parents sign up their children for up to 15 "swats" with a wooden paddle for each 24 hour period.  For more information, see Jack Hyles (below) and To Train Up a Child.
People and institutions closely associated with the Independent Baptist movement include:
- Steven Anderson
- Jack Chick
- John R. Rice
- Jack Hyles
- Bob Jones University (BJU)
- John Todd - Originally Pentecostal, later Independent Baptist. Most of the rabble-rousing he was infamous for was in Independent Baptist churches.
- Bryan College
- Maranatha Baptist University[please explain]
- Jerry Falwell in his early years. He later became a Southern Baptist.
- Kent Hovind
- Pensacola Christian College - Affiliated with fundamentalist textbook publisher A Beka Books.
- The Duggar family, stars of the TLC reality show 19 Kids and Counting.
 See also
- Fred Phelps - was an "independent" Baptist but not closely associated with the movement, nor with anyone else for that matter. He thought God hated everyone, presumably including all other independent Baptists, but excluding himself and his 70 or so followers. Phelps was a Calvinist, a doctrine which is rejected by most Baptists. 
 External Links
- Stuff Fundies Like-Silly blog dedicated to displaying/satirizing Independent Fundamental Baptists' standards, weirdness and craziness
- ↑ http://bible-truth.org/BaptistHistory.html
- ↑ http://www.independent-baptists.org/page21.html?
- ↑ http://abcnews.go.com/Health/independent-fundamental-baptist-discipline-call-tough-love-abuse/story?id=13310172
- ↑ http://www.phoenixmag.com/People/west-of-westboro.html
- ↑ see Pensacola Christian College's Articles of Faith for an example: http://www.pcci.edu/spirituallife/articlesoffaith.aspx