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The National Baptist Convention USA is the oldest African-American Baptist denomination and the largest predominantly black Christian denomination in the United States.

Formally organized in 1895, its roots stretch back to the early 1840s, with the Baptist Foreign Mission Convention, the National Baptist Convention of America, and the National Baptist Education Convention. None of these conventions thrived on their own so, in 1895, they merged to form the National Baptist Convention USA, although it was then known simply as the National Baptist Convention, as it was the single National Baptist body.

A Publishing Board was established and assigned to a Publishing Committee under the oversight of the National Baptist Convention's Home Mission Board. This is where a dispute took place. The Publishing Board took the position that it was an independent body, whereas the Convention held that the Board was accountable to the Convention.

In 1915, this led to a division in the Convention. The Publishing Board and its supporters formed the National Baptist Convention of America, which was not the same body that had been established earlier, while the Convention incorporated as the National Baptist Convention USA, and established another Publishing Board.

In cooperation with the Southern Baptist Convention, the NBC-USA organized the American Baptist Theological Seminary.

The Rev. J.H. Jackson became president of the Convention in 1953 and served until 1982, the longest-serving president. Jackson took the position that the Convention should not involve itself in political or social action issues, for which he had majority support. When the Convention refused to throw its weight behind Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s, this led to another split, and the formation of the Progressive National Baptist Convention.

Since this period, the Convention has shifted its positions and is currently active in social justice issues and voter registration drives.

The NBC-USA is active within the United States, Canada, the Bahamas, Jamaica, Panama, and Africa.

The NBC-USA holds that Scripture was written by divinely inspired men, without error, and that it reveals the principles by which we will be judged by God.

There is only one true God, and that in the unity of the Godhead there are three persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, who are equal in divine perfection.

Salvation is by grace, available through the mediation of Jesus Christ who, by appointment of the Father, took on a human nature, but was yet without sin. Through the death of Christ, the atonement of sins was made possible.

Those who believe are made justified, and this justification includes the pardon of sin and the promise of eternal life, made possible through the blood of Christ. Further, the Convention believes that salvation is available to any who will believe, and who are born again. Regeneration is made evident through the fruits of repentance, faith, and a newness of life.

Sanctification is the process through which Christians are made partakers in the holiness of God, and that this is a progressive work, begun in regeneration, and made possible through the presence and power of the Holy Spirit.

The NBC-USA holds to the doctrine of assurance of salvation.

In the National Baptist Convention USA, the only offices deemed scriptural are that of bishops, pastors, and deacons, whose qualifications are defined in the epistles to Timothy and Titus.

Baptistm is for believers and is done by immersion in water, baptizing in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. The Lord's Supper is for members of the church, and should be preceded by self-examination.

Sunday, the first day of the week, is the Lord's Day or the Christian Sabbath.

There is a significant difference between the righteous and the wicked, and that only those who have been justified through faith and sanctified by the Spirit of God are truly righteous, while all others are wicked in the eyes of God.

The NBC-USA holds that the end of the world is approaching and that, at this last day, Christ will descend from heaven to raise the dead from the grave for final judgment. A separation will then take place, with the wicked sentenced to endless punishment, while the righteous will be rewarded with endless joy. This final judgment will forever fix the state of men in hell or in heaven.

The National Baptist Convention USA participates in a Joint Convention of National Baptists that convenes every four years, and includes the National Baptist Convention of America, the Progressive National Baptist Convention, the National Missionary Baptist Convention of America, and the National Baptist Convention USA, the four major US African-American denominations.



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