The six principles which distinguish this section of Baptists from all others are those mentioned in the Epistle to the Heb 6:1-2, viz.
1. Repentance from dead works; 2. Faith toward God; 3. The doctrine of baptisms; 4. The laying on of hands; 5. The resurrection of the dead; 6. Eternal judgment.
They distinguish four baptisms:
1. John's "baptizing with the baptism of repentance;"
2. The baptism of the Holy Ghost and with fire on the day of Pentecost;
3. The baptism of Christ's sufferings. But after the resurrection of Christ there is only one kind of baptism to remain, viz.,
4. The baptism of the believers in Christ in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.
Their rite of "laying on of hands" corresponds with Episcopal confirmation, and is the chief point in their system on which they insist. They refuse communion as well as church-fellowship with churches who do not practice it. The Six-Principle Baptists are Arminians, holding to a general atonement. Their ministry generally has not been liberally educated nor adequately supported. They are almost confined to Rhode Island, out of which they have only a few congregations in Massachusetts, New York, and Pennsylvania. They originated as a separate organization in 1639, and at no period of their history counted more than 39 churches. In 1852 they formed two yearly conferences, the one of Rhode Island and Massachusetts, the other of New York and Pennsylvania. The Baptist Year-book for 1890 gives the following statistics: 16-churches, 16 ordained ministers, 1450 members. See (Winebrenner) History of Denominations in the U. S. Belcher, Religious Denominations; Smith, Tables of Church History.