Peter Ruckman’s claim that he did not change his convictions from the day he was ordained

"Now, what you’ll hear about this place is that it’s a cult, and of course, that’s just nonsense. We are Bible-believing Baptists, and I am the pastor of a local Bible-believing Baptist church. I am an ordained Southern Baptist minister, and when I was ordained, my pastor was moderator of the Escambia Bay Association. I have not changed my convictions from the day that I was ordained until right now." (Bible Believers' Bulletin. Feb. 2000, p. 2)

We personally highly doubt that last statement about not changing his convictions from the day he was ordained. Due to lack of literature available written by Ruckman before the mid 1960's, we are not setting off to prove what all of Ruckman's original views were at the time he was ordained in 1950 that could have changed. However, we do notice a progression to more extreme views over the years in some areas. The oldest writing we have by Ruckman is a first edition copy his 1964 book The Bible Babel. Even though the topic was Bible versions and exceeded 100 pages in length, notice all the differences compared to his later views:

  • There were no “throw out the Greek” statements.
  • There was no “superiority of English over the Greek” statements.
  • You will find the statement “In the original,” which he denounces harshly in his later works.
  • No mention was made of advanced revelation in the KJV.
  • No statements resembling “the KJV corrects the Greek and Hebrew.”
  • He utilized the phrase “Word of God” in reference to the Bible, with “W” capitalized, which he denounced as Neo-orthodox in his later writings.
  • Very minimal childish remarks.
  • No name-calling of fundamentalists (not even John R. Rice, BJU, nor Sword of the Lord).
  • More respectful of those he disagreed with.
  • Defines “Scripture” as “signifying the total body of all manuscripts extant; for example, the more than 4,800 Greek manuscripts of the New Testament.”

Although the above does not encompass all of Ruckman's controversial views, we believe it is strong evidence that his views evolved considerably and became more extreme over time. We therefore highly doubt his statement about not changing his convictions from the day he was ordained.

We find it hard to believe that a Baptist church with a typical ordination council of several Baptist preachers would have ordained Ruckman if he would have been forthcoming about believing in plans of salvation requiring works for certain periods, no women in heaven, Jesus could have sinned if he wanted to, spiritual circumcision, space travel and reproduction in heaven, sleeping together constituting marriage, the KJV can correct the Greek, is doubly inspired, and contains advanced revelations; rapture date guessing, abortion is not murder, among other reprehensible and unbiblical views we have documented at ruckmanism.org.

What do you think? Does the fact that he was ordained by a Baptist church constitute proof that he could not be cultic? If you had been on his ordination council and was made aware of Ruckman's views, would you have consented to ordain him and place your signature on his ordination certificate? If you had been on Ruckman's ordination council, or associated with the church that ordained him, but was not made aware of his controversial views, would you have been willing to revoke his ordination certificate once his controversial views were confirmed and attested?

 

5 Responses to “Peter Ruckman’s claim that he did not change his convictions from the day he was ordained”

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  1. Webmaster says:

    Although not stated outright, Ruckman's biography implies that he was ordained at Brent Baptist Church in Pensacola in 1950. Ruckman went on to pastor this same church during the 1960's. In the 1992 edition of his autobiography, Ruckman mentions Brent going down in attendance after he left and getting as low as 30. I find no reference to a Brent Baptist Church in the Pensacola area online, only an SBC church called East Brent Baptist Church at 4801 N Davis Highway. Anyone know what happened to the original Brent BC that Ruckman pastored, and may have ordained him?

  2. Nate Beck says:

    This would have been a near impossible claim to make. I take myself as an example. I got saved when I was 18 years old. I am now 37. I can tell you that many of my convictions have changed about ten times at least,s I've been saved!

    Now, I do realize Dr. Ruckman made this claim about his convictions from the date of his ordination, which comes a good time after salvation for most ministers, but you can't tell me there are many pastors whose convictions don't change at least somewhat later in life! As Christians we are supposed to learn and grow and NO CHRISTIAN ON EARTH knows everything or believes everything they should right after conversion, let alone ordination.

    A pastor is supposed to grow and be changed by the Lord as well. Our convictions must match what we learn in the Bible and change as needed as we grow, and there is no pastor who knows every Biblical truth that he should know right at ordination. I dont believe it! Many Biblical truths come with experience as a pastor, and convictions must grow with that experience. Anyone who can't acknowledge that fact either doesn't know much about the ministry at all, or is just proud! And God can't bless pride!

  3. Lin Kay says:

    Well my husband was following hism when we meant and although it completely turned me off I somehow wanted to still be with him. It was a hard and lumpy road and he even harshly condemned me as rejecting the word of God just because at the time I was using the Living bible for study as well as a women's devotional bible that used another kind.

    gHe still believe in him but has quit talking to me so much about him.

    Although I have now discovered that the only true to original scripture is the kjv and have found just what is wrong in the other ones.

     I can relate but I still do not care for the man. Not to speak ill of the dead as he sense has passed and I pray he is with the Lord.

    Anyhow I am quite surprised to learn he was southern baptist and not just fundamental Baptist.

     I however don't subscribe to the ONLY thing as you can't tell someone else what to read or what bible to use that is something they must find out themselves and it won't send you to hell.

    but I don't mean to go on

    • Nate Beck says:

      Lin, that is a common problem among "Ruckmanites". I am intimately familiar with the habits. Some Christian men have such a high esteem (many times it borders on idolatry) of Peter Ruckman, that they bring up his name and opinions almost as much as they do Christ and the scriptures! I personally know of men who won't even have a Biblical discussion or look up passages of scripture to get to the truth of a Biblical subject without hauling out a Ruckman Reference Bible or a commentary by Ruckman to see what his opinion was. Behavior such as this is why the term "Ruckmanite" was invented. Although some hold the title as a badge of honor, it really is just another example of the carnality that scripture condemns in 1 Corinthians 3:4-5! 

  4. Daniel del Mar says:

    Hi, good day your post is so so interesting,

    I really HATE his doctrines, and here in Philippines some of his followers (pastors) are filthy lucre!

    Please send me about his commentary about sleeping together constituting marriage and rapture date guessing, so I can study and expose his heresies. Thank you

    I'm from Philippines my name is Daniel del Mar 26 yrs old and I desired to be a pastor someday.

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