"I went to Jerusalem to become acquainted (Gk. istoria) with Cephas" - Paul's words from Galatians 1:18.

Frank and I Are on the Same Page :)

Frank Page called me today and said he was allowing his name to be nominated for President of the SBC. I have stated my personal intentions from the beginning --- I would allow my name to be nominated if there were no candidate to arise who is willing to face the issues that must be addressed in our convention.

I have mentioned at least five major issues, but I wish to focus on just two in this post, two issues I have discussed with Frank and find him to be on the same Page as I (nice pun if I say so myself :) ).

(1). WE MUST STOP NARROWING THE DEFINITION OF WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A SOUTHERN BAPTIST AND WE MUST STOP NARROWING THE PARAMETERS OF COOPERATION IN MISSIONS AND EVANGELISM!

Frank Page understands this.

Some of my reformed friends who are five-point Calvinists are concerned because Frank wrote a book six years ago that attacked those who hold to limited atonement. I spoke directly to Frank about this issue, because frankly, it was a concern to me as well. The book is out of print and Frank said it did reflect his personal views, but he recognized there is a large, and growing number of SBC pastors who would believe differently. He further told me that one of his best friend is a five-point Calvinist and members of his church are five-point Calvinists. In short, Frank recognizes that the SBC is large enough for people who hold to different views of the atonment.

Frank told me that he is willing to cooperate with any Southern Baptist in missions and evangelism, regardless of their Calvinistic tendencies. I have a simple word of caution for those of you who are my reformed friends --- if we reject a Southern Baptist for a position of service BECAUSE he personally rejects Calvinism (and writes about it), then we are no better than our Landmark friends who reject people for service BECAUSE they are not Landmark, or our cessationist friends who reject people for service BECAUSE they speak in tongues (I am speaking in terms of the SBC as a whole).

Our convention is large enough for us all, and frankly, it is healthy for us to be able to discuss these various views and stop rejecting those who disagree. We must learn to WORK TOGETHER FOR THE SPREADING OF THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST. Frank Page is committed to this view of the future of the SBC. Reformed theology in the SBC is not going away, and Frank Page is aware that Calvinists can be as missions minded and evangelistic as the most ardent Arminian (and I would say even more so!).


(2). WE MUST BREAK THE CHOKEHOLD ON THE APPOINTMENT PROCESS OF TRUSTEES AND NOMINEES FOR NATIONAL OFFICE THAT HAS GRIPPED OUR CONVENTION FOR THE LAST QUARTER CENTURY.

There are many, many stories that could be told of the manipulation of the nomination process. This system of control must be broken for the health of our convention. The stakes of the tent must be stretched. The base must be broadened.

Frank is a conservative with a vision for the future of the SBC. There may be more conservatives who announce they are running for President. If so, great! The more the better. We must get to the place where we recognize the gifts of many in our convention and don't just trust a handful to do our thinking for us.

I will continue to focus on the issues. I will continue to participate in the process. I will support every candidate who understands and is willing to face the issues.

Next week (Sunday afternoon through Thursday) I will be in Albuquerque, New Mexico for the International Mission Board trustee meeting. I have the privilege and pleasure of having my wife escort me on this trip.

I'll post from NM Monday.

Blessings this Lord's Day,

In His Grace,

Wade

83 comments:

brad reynolds said...

Wade

When you speak of widening the tent in missions, how wide are we talking? I have nothing but respect for Frank Page, but my concerns in the convention are far greater than Landmarkism or Cessationism.

Last week a member of the “Memphis” 30 spoke with me on the phone (he said I could share the entirety of the conversation with whomever I want). He said he was speaking to a group of pastors from the BGCT and encouraged them to come with him to Greensboro and bring their messengers and vote for change.

My concern was how many of these pastors have churches that give to the CBF (maybe none but the BGCT certainly allows it). The CBF is an organization that has refused to take a stand on inerrancy, homosexuality, abortion, and even the ordination of homosexuals. Our Christian love for those who have abortions, and homosexuals has not been as evident as it should. But I will not participate in missions with an organization that recognizes homosexual pastors.

In other words I will not cooperate with anyone who does not affirm the inerrancy of Scripture, or for that matter any other one of the 5 Fundamentals of the faith (Deity of Christ, etc.)

Since the CBF does not affirm inerrancy and YOU have said, one who does not hold to the Chicago Statement of Inerrancy would be a liberal, I have two questions.
1. Would you widen the tent to allow a liberal (one who does not affirm inerrancy) to participate with us?
2. Would you widen the tent to participate with the CBF?

These are vital questions for me and I'm sure many others. Thank you.
BR

Jack Maddox said...

Sounds like we are heading in a good direction. I believe Bro. Frank offers a viable choice for Southern Baptist who feel a different direction is in order without compromising the direction we took 25 years ago theologically as it relates to our position on the nature of scripture and insuring that our leadership reflects such a position.

Jack

Wade Burleson said...

Brad,

What are you trying to do?

(1). NO!

(2). What! They already have their own convention.

But, I would be very, very careful about saying things regarding the BGCT. CBF and BGCT are two different organizations.

For heavens sake the ordination of homosexuals? Are you serious? Do you really believe that is what is being advocated?

If so, you are really out of touch. We are MOVING WAY to the right into the demanding of conformity on the interpretation of doctrines.

Quit bringing the liberal thing up. We are ALL conservatives.

Wade Burleson said...

Brad,

Your turn.

Would you cooperate with someone who privately speaks in tongues?

Would you cooperate with someone who accepts 'alien' immersion?

Would you cooperate with a Calvinist?

Would you cooperate with someone who is not a premillenial?

Would you cooperate with someone who does not have a personal convinction of alcohol abstinence but follows the Biblical ethic of abstaining from drunkeness?

Would you cooperate with all these people?

That is what we are talking about.

Kevin Bussey said...

Wade,

Thanks for your graciousness during all of this. I like Dr. Page having interviewed with his church last year. He is a great man and Taylors is a wonderful church. They are very missions minded. I would have gone had God not calling me into the pastorate.

ANN said...

To our Blogger Brothers. Please! Somebody teach Brad and Hiram how to set up their own blogs! Surely not knowing how must be the only thing holding them back. It would be interesting to see just how many wide-column inches they have had on G&T as compared to polite commenters. This hasn't been a good day for many of us and picky,picky and tacky doesn't help.

martyduren said...

Brad-
It appears that you have not been in this discussion for very long. I realize that I could be wrong, yet you are bringing up things that have long been put to bed.

If you'll remember, we are the ones who elected to stay in the SBC because we are CONSERVATIVE. But, we are conservative in the sense of actually recognizing scripture, not SBC traditions, as the ultimate authority.

We firmly believe the Scripture to be verbally, plenary inspired by the very breath of God and believe that all sin is sin, not just homosexuality and abortion. You look in vain for liberals here.

BTW, what any member of the Memphis group does after Memphis, has nothing to do with the rest of the attendees. There is not constant conversation, between the group. The Declaration stands on its own.

If there end up being more than two candidates for President, then those making up the 30 will doubtless vote for more than a single candidate. We're not a bloc.

Trevor said...

Having not read Dr. Page's book against "Calvinism," but hearing that it might contain such inflammatory remarks as those who believe in definite atonement believe in a doctrine of Satan...I have three questions...

1. Does this book make any such comment?

2. If so, has the author recanted this irresponsible comment?

3. If not, how are we supposed to comfortably believe that Dr. Page will treat "Calvinists" fairly & respectfully, without making these kinds of insulting remarks?

I am really disappointed that you are not going to be nominated, Pastor Burleson.

Anonymous said...

FRANKly speaking, it looks like there are a lot of people on the same PAGE.

:)

WTJeff said...

Brad,

Remember, the BGCT is a broad tent somewhat like the SBC. While their association with the CBF does make me very uncomfortable, much of it has been a reactionary movement to prevent comformist from taking control of their convention. I may be naive, but due to my association with several people on staff there, I firmly believe that as the SBC moves away from conformity, the BGCT will move back toward the SBC. Also remember, both the Southern Baptist of Texas and the BGCT forwarded approx. $20 million to the CP. That's a clear indication that there are those churches within the BGCT who still are faithful the SBC and the BF&M 2000. If cooperation could be established with those churches, the BGCT itself may not be far behind.

Then again, I could just be a wide-eyed optimist who has been reading Wade's blog too long!

Wade Burleson said...

Trevor,

(1). It does make a comment similar to what you quote.

(2). I don't think Frank has "recanted" but I think he is wiser about not using such rhetoric.

(3). Frankly, all of us should hold everyone accountable in these matters.

I know I will.

Flounder said...

Wade,

I have been open to voting for the non-establishment candidate.

But as a reformed pastor who has heard unfair, uninformed, hurtful rhetoric from key players in the convention the last few years (from the late great Rogers, to Paige Patterson, to Jack Graham, Steve Gaines, and now Ergun Caner), I was hoping for someone without this kind of baggage to shake things up in the convention.

I may vote for Page, I really want to, but I think if he has written things that have just been alluded to, we've got to hear some sort of "recant" or something.

It isn't about wanting someone who I agree 100% with, I didn't expect a calvinist, but it has to be someone who personally respects those who hold to calvinistic theology.

It don't want to know if he can control his tongue or get along, I want to know if he personally thnks calvinism is evil.

Hoping for good reports, that will make Page an option.

brad reynolds said...

Wade
I apologize if my concerns concern you (your lack of concern here concerns me). Also, this will be long as I will try to be thorough to your remarks and questions.

In regard to the Memphis Declaration I have seen much inconsistency with what was stated in declaration number five and what was practiced on the Blogs, hence questions are begged. I brought one incident to your recall twice only to receive silence from your end.

I have been in the BGCT and in the BGAV, there are good conservative Bible believing, God-loving inerrantists in both who love God with all their heart, there are however, I fear, by the conventions lack of stand on inerrancy, ones in both conventions who may not affirm the Chicago Statement on Inerrancy and therefore fall under your definition of a liberal.

Further, I stated a fact, everyone can go to the websites themselves, both conventions cooperate with the CBF by allowing churches to fund the CBF and be members of the state conventions. And the CBF has refused to take a stand against abortion or homosexuality.

Also, I am dismayed at times with your position on moderation in drinking alcohol, and baptism, if your hermeneutic is limited to these I would be concerned; but if the same type of hermeneutic were taken to more important doctrines I would be gravely concerned. Please don't take that, as it sounds, I know my hermeneutic probably concerns you too...I'm not trying to appear superior in any way (for I certainly am inferior I'm sure in nearly every area, but I'm grateful we're both equal at the foot of the Cross), just being honest.

Now to answer your questions - I will gladly share where I stand.

1. Private prayer language: If it is private then I don't know about it.

2. "alien" immersion: Cooperate...to some degree. Accept them without baptism under the authority of a local church into my church...no. Fund them with CP money - I would vote NO.

3. Calvinism: Of Course! That is if it were predestined :)

4. Millennial View: Cooperate...yes.

5. Alcohol: The Biblical ethic is abstinence. However, if someone were to practice the unbiblical method of moderation in drinking there is no way I would vote to pay him or her with CP funds. No Way.

Wade, what are you trying to do? I have never and I mean NEVER heard anything about any movement to be uncooperative at all with Calvinists or those who differ concerning the millennium. PLEASE.

I'm not sure when or where you went to Seminary but I had two liberal professors when I went and I also did my PhD at William and Mary (a great school with some great professors and my Chancellor was Margaret Thatcher, but not a bastion of inerrantists). I know how liberalism slides in under the radar, undetected by many until it has a foothold. Call me radical and out of touch, but the stakes are too high not to remain concerned of this threat, especially with things I've read of late.

We are known not only by our enemies but also by our friends. Let us not forget the comments on this Blog of one who wanted you for President and also stated the word inerrancy came from the lips of the devil (although AFTER the connection was made, kindly recanted somewhat). Perhaps he is an anomaly, but perhaps not, which is what concerns me.

Finally, do you have evidence of the SBC MOVING WAY to the right on demanding conformity, or are you trying to do something here?

Thanks for your time and honesty, it is honorable.
BR

brad reynolds said...

Marty

Thanks for your stand on God's Word. May he bless your ministry.

Do you have any evidence of anyone leading the convention who does not recognize Scripture as the ultimate authority above SB traditions. If not, don't imply it, it goes against the spirit of declaration 5 that you signed. If you do then pleae bring it up at the convention and we will vote together to call for their resignation.
BR

Anonymous said...

WADE,
YOU ARE FULL OF GRACE AND TRUTH.
Thank you very much for showing GOD'S GRACE on all your posts. I look forward to meeting you one day.
Your 70 old BROTHER in CHRIST

scripturesearcher said...

ANN, many of us are in total agreement with your advice to brad reynolds.....

Of course, he dare not humiliate himself by starting his own blogspot.....who would read and take most of his bloviating comments seriously???

This strange verbose brother appears to one who likes to hear the sound of his own voice and read his own material.

dlfj said...

It seems that the old guard is very nervous about the direction things are going. People have actually started reading their bibles and stopped listening to them. What ever will they do? Will they keep calling anyone who disagrees with them a liberal? Will they use inuendo and gossip to discredit their politcal enemies? Surely not.

Dr. Reynolds, you can't honestly think that anyone who wants to cooperate with non-southern baptists to reach the world for Christ is a liberal, can you? I sense an increasing amount of desperation in your posts here, on SBC Outpost and the Founders blog. You sounded quite reasonable at the beginning, but now you are starting to sound like you are losing your core beliefs just to stay on the good side of the powers that be. I know your job depends on keeping these people happy, but don't you think this is starting to go too far. I am reminded of Senator Joseph McCarthy. As you will remember, he went so far that people started to see his quest for what it really was; political demogogery. I hope that this is not happening to you. Nothing Dr. Burleson has said could possibly be construed to be "liberal"; biblical maybe, but not liberal. You do realize that some day we will all sit around in heaven and wonder, "What in the world were we thinking?"

Heath Powers said...

I want to encourage Brad to go to CBF's website. He will find that he has misrepresented them. I challenge all believers to check out the facts before speaking against fellow brothers and sisters. I have heard way too much of this in Texas between the two state conventions. If we don't know the truth, let us hold our tongue(Matthew 12:36-37). We are God's church not fighting entities. If one needs rebuke, it must be done with the goal of restoration rather than division. We are closer theologically with CBF than many of the groups the IMB partners with. Why can't we encourage one another in the callings we have been given.
Heath Powers

Wade Burleson said...

Flounder,

If I find that Dr. Page or any other candidate skirts the issues, denigrates SBC people who hold to various views of the interpretation of Scripture, then there will be a candidate nominated who won't, but as it stands now, I am taking people at their word until I found out differently.

Wade Burleson said...

Brad Reynolds,

I really am very concerned for you.

In your four of your five answers you yourself placed recent Baptist traditions above the Word of God.

I say recent because Baptists in the 18th Century were known as "people of the book" and were Calvinistic, open to all the gifts of the Spirit, would roll over laughing if someone proposed the Biblical ethic was abstinence instead of drunkenness, were themselves stuanchly Calvinistic, and mostly non-premillenial.

I love you and can work with you, cooperate with you, and support you, but many of your statements in your last post are the very reason why there is concern for our beloved SBC. I am not asking that you BELIEVE differently. I am simply asking for intellectual and spiritual integrity to acknowledge that you COULD be wrong on these issues which conservatives themselves often disagree, and you will not EXCLUDE Southern Baptists who don't see it your way.

Finally, there needs to be a caution to all of us against adding to the Word of God. I would reread again the last paragraph of the Bible.


Wade

P.S. My lack of concern over what? Frankly, your continuing accusations of liberalism against fellow conservatives is more of a concern to me than people supporting "homosexual ordination" in the SBC. That is not just a straw man --- there ain't no straw.

I say this gently --- the new problem of the SBC may be your brand of Legalism and Fundamentalism (not the five fundamentals of the faith on which we all agree).

Wade Burleson said...

wtjeff,

Your comments are the most encouraging comments to me in the six months of blogging.

Hopefully this blog will have the same kind of effect on everyone, including Brad.

wade

Former M said...

Brad,

When we were fired for not bowing to threats by IMB administration, and accused of heresy, we returned to the US. I would not sign the BF&M 2000, because: 1. it was being used as a creed; 2. I believe it places itself above the Bible as an "instrument for doctrinal accountability"; 3. it lessened the role of Christ in relation to the Biblical text; 4. it makes of the Bible the only revelation of God (by implication of the definite article), excluding God's continued witness within and through the church today; and 5. we were told that our beliefs were not as important as our signature on a piece of paper.

No, I don't accept the Chicago Statement of Inerrancy. For me it demands a lessening of my understanding of both revelation and inspiration. It requires a one-time inerrant inspiration of a non-extant manuscript as though the Biblical texts were written as final drafts the first time around.

I refuse to base my faith on a text that God did not see fit to preserve. I rather accept the Biblical texts we have received as "sufficient" and authoritative for my faith, doctrine, and practice. I have seen SBC leaders raise a copy of their English text, claiming "I have an inerrant Bible." When pressed, they would claim original texts that no longer exist.

Tell me, which is the higher view of Scripture? An inerrant text that no one has, or a sufficient text that we all have access to?

Am I a liberal? As far as I'm concerned, I am more conservative that the fundamentalists. I'd rather hold to the Bible than to human traditions about it.

CBF made room for me, receiving me with open arms. They supported my family after the SBC kicked us out with no show of grace or mercy. I have found in CBF a refuge. I have found a community of grace and mercy, rather than a spirit of division and condemnation. In my experience it has been much more akin to the body of Christ than my recent experience in the SBC.

Ben Stratton said...

Bro. Wade,

Please explain your statement: "Baptists in the 18th Century were known as "people of the book" and were ... open to all the gifts of the Spirit".

Are you saying the Baptists of the 1700's spoke in tongues or practiced a private prayer language?

martyduren said...

Brad-
You for one.

You claim a "biblical ethic [of] abstinence." That is a man made tradition that elevates itself above the plain, clear teaching of the inspired text. Paul plainly says that each person muct be fully persuaded in his own mind; hardly abstinence.

Shall you make the motion for your own removal? ;^)

BTW, I'm a teetotaler.

Also, several in our convention (two formerly from the school where you teach) hold to the position that "women should not be in positions of ethical authority over men." Same elevation of tradition over truth, because it is applied waaaay yonder outside it's biblical context.

BTW, I don't believe that scripture allows women to be in pastoral positions.

Anonymous said...

Three brief observations:

1. You guys might as well go ahead and pass the baton to Ronnie Floyd in Greensboro. It would save everyone a lot of time, energy, and resources. Frank Page is probably a fine person, but widely unknown. His candidacy will generate far less enthusiasm for issues raised in this blog
than if Wade Burleson were to be nominated.

2. Heath Powers is correct. Distortions and mischaracterizations, especially about fellow Christians, serve none of us well.

3. Both the BGCT (TX) and BGAV (VA) enthusiastically partner with other moderate Baptists who wish to join them in reaching the world for Christ. Long before he became exective director of BGCT, Charles Wade was actively and visibly involved in CBF. All three groups have solidified their support and affiliation with Baptist World Alliance since it was defunded by the SBC.

Mark

Linda Rice said...

And this is why the lost stay lost because you do not love one another.

Anonymous said...

Brad, I am truly disappointed in you, I mean that with sadness. You have made an implication ( whether you meant to or not) that Wade is somehow a liberal and would "cooperate" with liberals who are outside the bounds of scripture.

From what we have seen here over the last few months Wade is as conservative as they come. He uses the bible as his guide and believes in inerrancy. What I appreciate about what I have seen of him on his blog is that he appears to stick to the bible even when the traditions of men try to say something the bible does not. That is truly inerrancy in action and not just a political battle cry.

I do not think you meant to do this but your implications remind me of an old tactic. Throw out the suggestion he is willing to cooperate with liberals in the hope that others will join in the blame game and thus connect him to liberalism. It is more of a policitical move that a biblical one. Politicains and SBC denominationalist have used it for years in politics. IMO you know full well he would not cooperate with homosexual ordination and so on.

By your own standard we could assume you were a liberal since you shared that you got a degree from William and Mary. We cannot make that assumption of you and most on this blog will not. They will get to know you first to hear what you believe before throwing out such blame game tactics.

I would encourage you in the cause of Christain love and unity to call Wade and find out his beliefs before throwing these things around publicly.

annie said...

W. A Criswell was fond of saying, "CBF is a knat on an elephant's rump." An apt analogy. It was. It is. It probably will never be more than that to SBC. If I could, I would ask, "Wally, then why don't you all threat it as such and ignore it completely?" (Of course, praying for an organization that Loves the Lord, Believes His Word and does Missions with a great spirit and generosity, might be something that would please God. Try it.)

JUSTAMOE said...

1. No state Baptist convention in the U.S. has grown as large as the BGCT (not by accident, folks--God actually may have had something to do with this), is more committed to the Bible as "truth without any mixture of error" (same as BF&M 2000--from which the word "inerrant" was omitted intentionally), or is doing more for missions/evangelism (seeking now to start 1500 new churches between 2006 and 2011--I'm impressed!);

2. Remember: the BGCT is Texan, and apparently has demonstrated its "Lone Star" nature by standing on its convictions regarding historic Baptist principles--who can fault it for that? Non-Texans may not like that, but native Texan Baptists don't really care (and apparently understand this as principle, not as being ugly--in the end, it'll be God, not the SBC Executive Committee, handing out rewards in Heaven);

3. This would be a good time to visit the CBF's Internet website to find out what it DOES stand for--once and for all (might be surprised);

4. I've typed this until I'm blue in the fingernails: ANY YEAR'S VERSIONS (1925, 1963, 2000) OF THE BAPTIST FAITH & MESSAGE IS REPRESENTATIVE OF THE PERSONAL THEOLOGICAL PERSUASIONS OF EVERY KIND OF BAPTIST EVER WALKING ON THE PLANET EARTH--AND, NOT TO AGREE WITH THIS STATEMENT IS NOT TO KNOW EITHER THE BAPTIST FAITH & MESSAGE STATEMENTS OR BAPTISTS, OR BOTH! Everyone, let each other one among us choose the version of the BF&M he wants to adhere to AND get along! I'm absolutely convinced that we can do that if we will--Wade and a hundred others posting at the popular blogsites are indicating the same; what's the matter with people? It's time, brothers, to grow up and get along for the sake of missions/evangelism/redemption--and THAT'S ALL THAT I'M TALKING ABOUT HERE. Let's stop arguing and move forward!

5. I think that I've been very encouraging in my posts, too. ">)

brad reynolds said...

Wade
Nice stroke but broad brush. Let us be clear on some things. I did not say I am concerned about people in the SBC supporting "homosexual ordination," I am concerned about people who support organizations (CBF) that refuse to take a stand on "homosexual ordination."

I am grateful you posts my posts in their entirety, I am very aware of the problem of communicating through the medium of type, so PLEASE quote me accurately without any inferences.

By the way I said I would Cooperate with a Calvinists - my exact words were OF COURSE. Please stop throwing the Calvinists thing around, or if you do say there is some leadership who refuse to Cooperate with Calvinist provide evidence - your signature on the Memphis Declaration as well as integrity requires such.

Allow me to assume with your problem to my answers that you would have the opposite ones or else there would be no problem...so let's go through them.

1. If there is a private prayer language, then it is private and I don't know about it - if they are telling others "I've got a private prayer language" then they have gone from one who has a private prayer language to one who is implicitly advocating it.

2. I said I would vote against giving CP funds to one who practices alien immersion. I will assume you would vote to give CP funds to one who practices alien immersion - I certainly would fight for your right to do so, so please keep the tent wide-enough for me to vote against it without calling my a "legalist."

3. I said I would vote against giving CP funds to someone who practices moderation in drinking. I assume you would vote for giving CP funds to one, based on your reaction to my answer. Again, I would fight for your right to vote this way, please don't accuse me of legalism because we vote differently...that smacks of conformity.

Perhaps my assumptions are wrong...so since we are having open dialogue on these issues and I have told you exactly where I stand allow me to ask you "would you vote to give CP funds to one who practices moderation in drinking or Alien immersion?

NO WHERE have I placed recent Baptist traditions above God's Word, this is perhaps the furthest from the truth and closest to slander you have ever been in any statement...Just because I do not agree to your interpretation of God's Word does not mean that it is not my ultimate authority.

PS - Voting to not fund them with CP funds is not the same as "EXCLUDING" them from the SBC.

Your caution against adding to God's Word is very wise advice...thank you...I for one by the grace of God will heed it.


Thanks for your concern and keep me in your prayers...I certainly am aware I can err and yet desire nothing more than to please my savior. Please join me in praying I never dishonor him, especially in a public forum.
BR

chadwick said...

Brother Burleson,

I read with sadness of the "new guy" (Frank Page: a "Greensboro Home Town Boy") that entered his name into the SBC presidency election. According to BP, "He is the author of a book titled, “Trouble with the Tulip: A Closer Examination of the Five Points of Calvinism,” released in 2000 by Riverstone Group Publishing."

Do you think this is a political ploy to sway the SBC Calvinists to vote for Dr. Floyd? (It seems pretty strange that BP would include Page's book info.) I pray that you will allow your name to be submitted & it become a "3 man race." I know your motives and I am on the same (motive)page as you but not the other PAGE you are on with Dr. Page. Therefore, stop beatin' around the bush and submit your name! I know I speak for a vast majority of like-minded brethren! Burleson for President!!!! (I can hear all of the cyber-AMENS to that! If you listen closely, you can too!)

Respectfully,
Chadwick Ivester
Pastor of Sand Hill Baptist Church
Kershaw, SC

brad reynolds said...

wtjeff

You are the Barnabus here...Wade and I find brotherly harmony and agreement about your comments.

Thank you for your sweet spirit.

Please know where I am coming from...there is a real possibility that I am over-reacting (although with what I've read, I think not) with my concern of the creeping in of liberlism, but I have seen up close the effects of it and when I think the door is left open I rush to close it, I know in doing so I have aaumptions made about me, which simply aren't true.
BR

Bob Cleveland said...

Wade:

The only thing that concerns me about Frank Page, that I know of now, is his stance, his real stance, on "limited atonement".

If it's true that he said folks who hold that belief are "under the influence of" satan, then I'd question how he would now feel that the SBC was big enough for folks under the influence of satan.

You referred to "rhetoric" and if that's what it was .. verbal overkill, then I understand. But that ought to be recanted, if that's the case.

In my experience, those who disagree with "limited atonement" most often disagree with something it is NOT. Something that it does NOT say.

It's all only man's observation about what God says, anyway. It's not what God actually said.

brad reynolds said...

dlfj
Of course I would cooperate with non SBC entities and have (Methodist, Presbyterian, Congregationalist) but I would not fund them with CP dollars.

Hence the clarification of the term cooperation - it is used on this Blog in more than one way...I would that we all be clear here. If by cooperation one means fund with CP dollars then say "fund with CP dollars." If one means to join in missions to win peolpe to Christ then they should say so.

Concerning where I stand, I stand for truth as I see it in God's Word.

And yes heaven will be sweet and we will see clearly, I look forward to seeing you there.

Honestly I hate conflict and have been misunderstood, misquoted and very much disliked, not to mention the false accusations, I'm sure in this others on both sides of the issues can relate. While I do disagree with many I admire their boldness to speak their minds (Rex comes to mind here), pray that in the spirit of conflict I never misquote or make false accusations. Thank you for being used by God to help me repent of pride.
BR

flounder said...

hopefully someone will interview Page specifically on the issue of calvinism and we can see where he is now.

I think it would be ideal if there would be a first vice presidential candidate, who was reformed, that Page could vouch for.

I'm not available. :<)

Anonymous said...

Just a question -- what is the BGCT and CBF?

Jack Maddox said...

I say this gently --- the new problem of the SBC may be your brand of Legalism and Fundamentalism (not the five fundamentals of the faith on which we all agree).

WOW! That was gentle…It is good to be amongst so many friends, I just wish one of them was mine!

Let me get this straight, as long as I am against (HERE IS A NEW LABEL) The ‘conformist’ crowd...then I love the SBC and all my brothers and sisters...but if I voice real concerns and take issue with the blog bunch, then I am a 'conformist' and a 'legalist'

Wade, you asked Brad a question and he answered it (Which is more than I can say concerning my questions to you)and you sir attack him while the Choir shouts AMEN!!!!
Do you not understand these are real concerns. Can you not accept the premise that there are real inconsistencies from those who shout from the rooftops the virtue of all that is Memphis and at the same time violate the very document they extol in their posts and opinions (Of course Wade I am not speaking about you, you are to gracious and virtuous to do such a thing) Why is it that Gene McB can post a comment that would be fitting for a afternoon read and everyone is appreciative (I AM) of his time and effort but Brad takes the time to join in on the discussion and all of a sudden "He needs to start his own Blog"

Let's see if I understand this

1) Brad is a legalist
2) Brad is a conformist
3) Brad is a lackey who's job depends upon his conformity
4) Brad calsl people liberals if they disagree with him
5) Brad needs to start his own blog where no one will read it.
6) Brad likes the sound of his own voice

That’s why I like this Blog, there is so much room for differing opinions, as long as they are mine I suppose.

What if, and dare I say it, Brad has concerns that represent the thoughts and opinions of a lot of Southern Baptists (I know, if we have differing opinions from many on this site then we must be carrying out the whims and wishes of our masters) but just what if? What if there is a growing CBF influence in a counter SBC movement? What if inclusion and widening the tent leads to acceptance of men and women who do not hold to the BF&M 2000? You see, much of the rhetoric and positions that are being held in this forum are what many of us fought so hard against and are concerned could return if we do not spell out just how wide the tent can be. (And I am not talking about issues of alien baptism or Calvinism ) That is all Brad is trying to get you to come clean on, and every time he asks or I have asked we are stonewalled. To me again, the issue is the nature of scripture. Brad asked about ones position on a leader or representative that would not hold to the Chicago statement on inerrancy - thus he is full of himself and a 'liberal hunter' Brad asked about CBF concerns - thus he is a conformist and a lackey for current leadership...
and he brings up concerns about a growing BGCT influence in the SBC and folks that are not from Texas wax on and on about how that ought to be! If church's in Texas wish to be clearly identified with the SBC there is a state convention in which they can do so. If they choose not to it is because they like the big tent of the BGCT which includes the BWA, the CBF, Baylor, Logsdon, The Seminary in Richmond. Etc.

The Big Tent is an issue to many of us, and it being so does not make us lackeys, legalists or hyper fundies...it is just a concern that we would like addressed

I will say this, I do not believe Frank Page envisions the tent being as broad as you do Wade, thus I will be surprised if your followers in the blogosphere will end up supporting him.

That is why if not this year, perhaps next, but without a doubt in 08 Wade you will be nominated for President of the SBC. (And I will not be surprised to see it this year)

Wade Burleson said...

Mr. Stratton,

Read Gill's 18th Century Body of Divinity for yourself and you will see there was never any denigration of the gift of tongues.

Wade Burleson said...

Jack,

I must gently challenge you.

Please show proof where those things were said of Brad.

I would hate for you to be guilty of slander :).

I do believe Brad is a tradionalist, basing some (not all) of his views on the opinions and traditions he has been taught and not the inerrant, infallible Word of God. I love TRADITIONALISTS, but if those traditionalists wish to exclude others from service (or support of the CP), then "Houston, we have a problem."

The good news is, I believe Brad has the kind of spirit that allows him to continue to converse

Anonymous said...

brad,
wade has been very gracious with his time. How bout moving on on this issue.

Ron West said...

Wade,

I have to admit I am disappointed that you will not be nominated for SBC president. You may be on the same page with Frank Page but the vast majority of the rest of us know nothing about him. We knew where you stood on issues that were important to many of us and felt you would articulate our concerns as president of the SBC or as a candidate we could be proud of at least.

The two issues you mention are important. In the first you seem to be focusing on Calvinist versus Armenian. Those are not the parameters most of us are concerned with. I do not know if Frank has signed the Memphis declaration or even said he agreed with any of it but I would be interested to know his views of point 5. Has he turned a blind eye to the slanderous, unsubstantiated accusations and malicious character assassination of our Christian brothers? If so, has he repented of it? If he did not turn a blind eye, has he a record of opposing it? Also important for the president is the second paragraph of 5. Is he committed to confront lovingly those who divide our denominate by careless or unchaste speech?

The second issue you mentioned is even more important. The most lasting influence a president will have is his appointments. He may be a conservative with a vision for the future of our convention but what is his vision for the appointment process. When Morris Chapman was elected president he promised to widen the tent but he was as restrictive and narrow as any of his predecessors. Jim Henry made some good appointments but pretty much restricted himself to those who had endorsed the resurgence. When I asked him about a particularly bad appointment from my state, he told me he got his name from those on the inner rim of the conservative resurgence. Will Frank Page be open to appointing those theological conservatives who have recognized the faults of the resurgence from the beginning and never endorsed the political activity associated with it or will he continue their ostracism. Would he appoint those from the BGCT or BGAV or are they only allowed to give money but not allowed to serve as trustees? Will he have to courage to not be afraid of being called a liberal or compromiser if he does not follow the commands of the resurgence leaders?

Jack Maddox said...

Thanks Wade, let me share where I gleaned these thoughts from.

1) Brad is a legalist
Wade – you said “I say this gently --- the new problem of the SBC may be your brand of Legalism and Fundamentalism”

2) Brad is a conformist –
dltj said “You sounded quite reasonable at the beginning, but now you are starting to sound like you are losing your core beliefs just to stay on the good side of the powers that be.”

3) Brad is a lackey who's job depends upon his conformity
dlfj said “I know your job depends on keeping these people happy, but don't you think this is starting to go too far. I am reminded of Senator Joseph McCarthy. As you will remember, he went so far that people started to see his quest for what it really was; political demagoguery.

4) Brad callsl people liberals if they disagree with him
Wade said “P.S. My lack of concern over what? Frankly, your continuing accusations of liberalism against fellow conservatives is more of a concern to me than people supporting "homosexual ordination" in the SBC. That is not just a straw man --- there ain't no straw.”

5) Brad needs to start his own blog where no one will read it.
Scripturesearcher said “Of course, he dare not humiliate himself by starting his own blogspot.....who would read and take most of his bloviating comments seriously???”

6) Brad likes the sound of his own voice
Scripture searcher said “This strange verbose brother appears to one who likes to hear the sound of his own voice and read his own material.”

After my post Wade these comments followed:

On Brad labeling folks liberal who disagree with him

Annonymess said “Brad, I am truly disappointed in you, I mean that with sadness. You have made an implication ( whether you meant to or not) that Wade is somehow a liberal and would "cooperate" with liberals who are outside the bounds of scripture.

“I do not think you meant to do this but your implications remind me of an old tactic. Throw out the suggestion he is willing to cooperate with liberals in the hope that others will join in the blame game and thus connect him to liberalism.

I do not believe Brad has called Wade a ‘liberal’ DO you believe this Wade?

So anyway, thanks Wade for the chance to clear up the subtle accusation of ‘libel’ I guess it is better than liberal : )

Jack

brad reynolds said...

Former M
See Wade's statement where he classifies one who does not hold to the Chicago Statement on Inerrancy as a liberal and then states he would not broaden the tent to liberals.

Anonymous,
If you inferred that I implied Wade was a liberal from my questions I apologize...I certainly did not imply it nor did I intend to imply it. His statement on inerrancy makes clear he is conservative; it is those in his boat that concern me as well as his other views.

Marty,
I have shown clearly that the biblical ethic of abstinence is drawn from Scripture not tradition, in fact I NEVER referred to tradition, only those who do not hold to this ethic have been referring to tradition (which is an ad-hominal approach to debate I might add).

Further, I have shown the inconsistency of holding to this view (it would be unwise to tackle these issues again – please refer to the comments under Wade’s Blog “When Baptist and Beer Don’t mix.”

Timothy speaks concerning women teaching men in the local church to take it beyond Scripture is unwise and possibly unbiblical, to not adhere to Scripture is certainly unbiblical.
BR

JUSTAMOE said...

Anonymous (posting # 40-ish):

"BGCT" = Baptist General Convention of Texas (www.bgct.org)

"CBF" = Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (www.thefellowship.info/


For the best info about what each stands for, if you're interested, don't get that info from anyone else--call the executive directors of each organization yourself (see at the "contact us" link at each website)--they'll talk to you, and they'll be honest about how they are like and unlike the SBC.

If you do call them, you'll have exercised more courage than anyone I know who's voiced concerns about them in recent years--but, then, that's what the SBC really seems to need: more people with more moral fortitude despite what other SBC'ers say or think (seems like that's exactly what the leadership of both the BGCT and the CBF have done in recent years, by the way; you have to admire that . . .).

brad reynolds said...

Wade
Thanks for your belief that I am a "Traditionalists," if there is any evidence to your belief please reveal it (where are any of my beliefs dependent on man's traditions rather than God's Word) or else stop implying it.
I could say I believe with some of Wade's views he is a liberal but I will not, because I can't imply it with what you have written, extend the same courtesy to me, please.

Also,
I've answered your questions boldly and clearly please do the same for me.

"Would you vote to give CP funds to one who practices moderation in drinking or Alien immersion?"
BR

Anonymous said...

You Fundamentalists just keep on fighting and arguing while people make their way toward hell. The CBF and the BGCT are making positive steps to share the good news of Jesus Christ with all the world to point all people toward Jesus Christ. Christ can transform the homosexuals, those whose lives have been touched by abortion and all those with every belief unacceptable by the SBC. Again, I say that I am glad that I became a Christian before I knew about the SBC.

JUSTAMOE said...

I can think of a TON of things worse than Wade Burleson being nominated/elected as SBC president, brothers! Think about it--and stop being so hard to get along with, for the sake of missions/evangelism/world redemption.

Go back and read it for yourselves: when the state Baptist convention in Texas was coming apart at its seams a few years ago, there were VERY FEW (like 2?!) Baptist pastors with guts enough to try to keep it from happening, going to both sides to show the disobedient folks there (Baptists in Texas NEVER have split for godly reasons--read the history!) what their sins were/are and how much common ground they actually share/d. I can see that there STILL are very, very few such Texas Baptist pastors; and, it's sad--and I'm glad that I don't serve with one like that.

If there are as many leaders among us as the folks blogging at this site would lead us to believe that there are today, then we ought to be able to come together and move forward for the cause of Christ--or, some of the folks posting comments here need to change what they've stated in their blogging profiles!

Wade Burleson said...

Jack,

Thanks for clearing things up.

Please notice that you are using comments of others, not my own.

It is unfortunate that in attempting to maintain an environment where people can freely dissent, there are those who take the comments of guests as my own.

Finally, I do not believe Brad is calling me a liberal.

However, if liberal is defined in the sense as one opposed to Fundamentalism and Legalism (and not the fundamentals of the faith), then I wear the label proudly. :) --- Regardless of where it comes from



wade

brad reynolds said...

Jack

Thank you for your words and bringing something to my attention. I try not to defend my actions (although I fail many times in this) but to clarify issues.

However, when someone implies an untruth about those in authority over me I am compelled to dispel it.

dlfj mentioned something about my job depending on keeping these people happy. I'm not sure whom he was referencing, but if he at all was refering to my President then he is wrong! Dead Wrong!

I did go and ask my President for permission to Blog on issues that concern me to which he responded something to this effect, "Brad, contrary to what some believe, you know you are free to think and express your own thoughts." It went without saying, "unless they conflict with the Abstract or BFM2K" which I affirmed and signed (to speak against them, after signing them would reveal inadequacies in my character).

Further, my wonderful bride is the only one to whom I have read my comments before they are sent (she has a tendency to smooth the rough edges).
BR

darren said...

Brad,

While there may be some disagreement and differing views here... I believe that the discussion is good, honors Christ, and our hearts are after the things of the Kingdom and His glory.

As I work through this myself, let me ask you about your answer regarding praying in tongues.

You answered...

"If there is a private prayer language, then it is private and I don't know about it - if they are telling others "I've got a private prayer language" then they have gone from one who has a private prayer language to one who is implicitly advocating it."

But what if the person isn't going around talking about it or telling people he has a private prayer language? What if he is asked and simply answers honestly as Dr. Rankin did?

If this is the case, what would your position of cooperation be? And would you support CP funds putting an otherwise qualified candidate such as this on the mission field?

Thanks for your time and answer...

Darren

Jack Maddox said...

Wade

DO note that in my original post I did not claim that you said these things. I address you because it is your blog. I believe that I made it clear that I was talking about the context of what was being said not only by yourself but also by others. I have re read my post and believe that was the case.

Yet, I do offer my apology if I did not make it clear enough. I was not speaking about you directly but the many who post on this and other blogs who seemingly say one thing in Memphis yet something else altogether on these forums.

It is becoming abundantly clear what the real issues are for many that share the views and the positions of those who comment here and other blogs.

May all of us as Southern Baptist have the convictions to vote accordingly in Greensboro in a way we feel God leading us.

That is the Baptist way!

Jack

Tom Bryant said...

Wade,
Thanks for your stand and gracious spirit in making those stands. I am sorry you won't allow your name presented, but you have to do what God leads you.

I don't know Dr. Page nor have I heard much about him. I look forward to learning more about him.

Brett said...

Dear Ms. Rice,

May I suggest that your comment "And this is why the lost stay lost because you do not love one another" is both unloving and unbiblical?

Unloving because you appear to be rushing to judge people that you don't even know aside from a few internet comments.

Unbiblical because your statement assumes that lost people will become Christians if they see Christians "loving" each other, which also assumes that lost people have a clue what biblical, unselfish, agape love even is.

Furthermore, Someone very wise explicitly taught that the lost stay lost because they hate the light and refuse to come to it for fear their deeds will be exposed (See John 3). It is true that He also said that we would be known by our love for one another but even then he did not explicitly teach that such love would cause the lost to no longer be lost.

Of course, I could be wrong. If you can show me Scriptures that teach that lost people stay lost because Christians disagree over some issues, feel free to share them with me, because I've been wrong about a lot of things before.

GOP Christian said...

I just spent half an hour reading this site, all the while expecting to be inspired by something dramatic and important, but I'm not sure if I'm experiencing an anti-climax or if I already experienced it and didn't notice. Now, I am glad I got the token responses against abortion and homosexuality I was looking for, but since I got them right off the bat I guess I was expecting a little more, because I've got body-count clocks ticking off in my head and I don't think anything we've said will stop 4,000 Americans from ending up dead from abortion before the sun goes down.

"Our Christian love for those who have abortions, and homosexuals has not been as evident as it should." - Brad

Maybe I'm out of touch with modern theology, because I learned how to be Christian mostly by reading the KJV Bible cover to cover instead of going to church, so maybe you could tell me, does anybody go to Hell anymore? I wonder about that, because there are alot of Christians who say most people are going to Hell, but when they see me tell people who are going to Hell to go to Hell they get really upset as if they want to fill Heaven to the throne with the Hellbound drug-addled devils who pull knives on me for telling them not to piss on my church right in front of me.

Another thing, gluttony and sloth are still sins right? I would think so, because alot of people are earning the wages of sin from choking down the kinds of dainties usually served before or after church services: sausage biscuits, fried chicken, fried doughnuts, fried coffee, and various other fried forage-crops. ...with extra butter. So, should we give funds to fat-asses who chug pork-soda by the gallon while people like me are starving because it's more important to try to save the world than feed one person who's trying to save the world? Just a thought.

"Heal the sick, raise the dead,
cleanse the leper, cast out devils;
freely have you received, freely give."

Rev. Thomas S. Painter (Republican)
GOP Christian Ministries
Jesusville, Florida 32202

Anonymous said...

Brad,
I hesitate to join the "let's beat up on Brad" group, but I may have the answer to your dilemma.

I think that one of your problems is that you do not express yourself clearly. Your dangled participles and split infinitives exhaust me before I ever get past the second paragraph. Also, it should not take 10+ paragraphs to say what you are trying to say.

What do you teach at SEBTS?

martyduren said...

Brad-
Thanks for responding. I haven't read all the comments under the "Wine" post, but I do not buy your ethical argument as you have presented it thus far.

What is the "unbiblical method of moderation" to which you refer on this thread?

Do you consider a restriction of women from being Strategy Coordinators with the IMB (due to being in "ethical authority over men") to be an elevation of tradition over text?

Thanks.

Alan Cross said...

To get back to the original point of the post, I am sorry to hear that you will not be nominated, Wade. While I am sure Frank Page is a godly man, I do not know anything about him. We have all been coming here for months because of serious issues that have plagued our convention for years. Those issues came to a head and affected everyone of us through the new IMB policies. I am now a conservative Southern Baptist who cannot, in good conscience, cooperate with my mission board by sending applicants if they/we are not in line with these new policies (not that I would not cooperate with missionaries or through continued funding for the present missionaries).

I am not asking you to comment on the poliices, but I feel like that was the issue, and then it became about everything else. Now we have a nominee that no one knows and will not engender the support that you would have. Even if you had lost, I feel that an opportunity to speak up for principle has been lost. I am disheartened. While I will still be in Greensboro, I wish that you would have placed you name in the process.

Wade Burleson said...

I must confess I myself sometimes get a headache reading the comments.

I was very close to banning all anonymous comments then Mr. Religious Right-Wing showed up with a legitimate site and I realized that anonymous comments are sometimes better than those with legitimate blog.

Nevertheless, I am considering establishing a policy on comments that is broad but possible helpful.

Your suggestions on the proposed policy are invited.

PROPOSED COMMENT POLICY:

(1). All comments unrelated to the post will be banned.
(2). All comments that denigrate a person will be banned.

Wade Burleson said...

Alan and Ron,

I have learned that things can turn on a dime in one day.

Greensboro is still many days away.

Things may change before then.

We'll see.

Jeremy Roberts said...

Wade, have you ever blogged on your views of alcohol? I disagree with you on your opinion, but am interested in hearing why you believe what you believe. If you have not already done so, would you please blog on this? It would create an interesting dialogue.

Thanks,

Jeremy

brad reynolds said...

Wade

Your silence is Loud.

Be bold my friend, answer my questions, as I did yours.

1. Do you have evidence of the SBC MOVING WAY to the right on demanding conformity, or is this some sort of tactic?

2. Would you vote to give CP funds to one who practices moderation in drinking or Alien immersion?
BR

Elizabeth said...

Wade,
PLEASE DON'T POST THIS. This is for your information only, just didn't know how to say it without someone getting offended.

Maybe you and Mr. Reynolds can continue this debate via email instead of on the blog.

It has become like sitting in a Sunday School class with one person dominating the conversation. After a while, people just quit listening.

Elizabeth

brad reynolds said...

Anonymous,

I teach English and Short Essay Writing at SEBTS.

No, not really...thanks for the laugh though.

I feel, at times, that (notice the split infinitive here) Paul's words "I came not with the excellency of speech," could be more attributable to me than any other:)
BR

Maiden said...

Wade

You have not answered Brad's questions

"Would you vote to give CP funds to one who practices moderation in drinking or Alien immersion?"

They are legit questions. While I may not agree, he was honest with his answers.

Jack Maddox said...

gop christian said

"fried doughnuts, fried coffee, and various other fried forage-crops. ...with extra butter."

Now wait one minute buster...WE DON'T SERVE FRIED COFFEE AT OUR CHURCH!!!!! And extra butter????? Wadaya think we are....a bunch a stinken liberals!!!!!! Extra butter is a slippery slope we refuse to go down!

Jack

Wade Burleson said...

Brad,

(1). Yes

(2). Yes

Elizabeth,

Sorry, but your sentiments are too valuable not to post.

Wade Burleson said...

Dr. Reynolds,

Please answer my question:

As an employee of a seminary supported with Cooperative Program funds, would you be in favor of receiving CP funds from churches that hold to the Biblical ethic of moderation and the abstinence from drunkenness, and received into their membership people who had been baptized by immersion after having come to faith in Christ, but NOT in a Southern Baptist Church (otherwise known as 'alien immersion')?

Further, if you do not believe it inherently sinful to receive funds from churches like this, then where is the consistency in excluding those churches, pastors or members who hold to such views from denominational service?

martyduren said...

Brad-
Your silence is loud. I'm still actually interacting with you.

You didn't answer my two questions.

Now I have a third: Are "alien baptisms" performed in Area 51? If not, to what do you refer and what is your biblical text for "alien baptism"?

And a fourth, are you a Landmark theologian?

Wade Burleson said...

Jeremy,

You asked for my views on the Bible and alchohol. I would like for you and Brad both to respond to the following:

Daniel B. Wallace has taught Greek and New Testament courses on a graduate school level since 1979. He has a Ph.D. from Dallas Theological Seminary, and is currently the professor of New Testament Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary.

One of the best articles available via the internet on The Bible and Alcohol is written by Dr. Wallace. I would encourage every Southern Baptist to carefully read this excellent essay and then ask this question, "Can a Southern Baptist demand total abstinence of alchohol from other Southern Baptists and actually be a believer in the inerrant Word of God?"


Dr. Wallace says, "One question we must wrestle with is this: If there is a subcultural Christian prohibition that goes beyond scripture, are we obligated to follow it? Should we even endorse it? Ignore it? Fight against it? As we all know, there are numerous Christian taboos that go beyond scripture, depending on when and where one lives. Perhaps this one can be seen as paradigmatic for how to treat the others.

At all points, we must seek to be biblical. This requires resisting the temptation to go beyond what the Bible restricts. As I began to look into this topic (alchohol), I was actually quite amazed at the biblical writers’ attitude toward alcohol. I had expected it to be far more negative than it really was. One lesson I have learned from this is that although I think that I am being biblical, often my tradition and Christian subculture shape my thinking more than I realize.
"

Dr. Wallace also gives an interesting anecdote that sums up a problem I believe we face in the SBC when he writes, "Church historian M. James Sawyer recently spoke at the western regional meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society on Sola Scriptura in the Protestant tradition. In his lecture he noted the irony of the modern milieu:

'Among contemporary denominations we find statements such as that of the [denomination’s name withheld], who in their licensing and ordination questionnaire asks candidates if they agree that the Bible is the ‘only and infallible rule of faith and practice’ for the believer. (The questionnaire on the very next line asks the candidate if he agrees to abstain from the use of alcohol in all forms.)

The point we are trying to make here is twofold: (1) Christians tend to compile rules and regulations that go beyond what is written; and (2) when such grey zones are considered evil, those who do not abide by such rules are often viewed as ‘the weaker brother.’ In reality, the weaker brother in scripture is the one who has too many scruples, not too few (cf. Romans 14)! It is a tragic irony that as one matures in the faith, all too often his life collects more and more oppressive chains of legalism. As much as there may well be good reasons for one to personally hold to certain convictions, we must be very careful about extending such beyond ourselves'."


Dr. Wallace's exposition and exegesis of hundreds of Biblical texts clearly shows the Biblical ethic is moderation (as exemplified in Jesus), though there are examples of total abstinence (as exemplified in John the Baptist). Dr. Wallace concludes his article with a profound statement reminding us of true, Biblical Christianity . . .

"The general contours of biblical teaching are that wine is a blessing from the Lord, something to be enjoyed. But like any good gift from God, it can be abused: in this case, abuse involves addiction and drunkenness. But whenever we condemn others who are able to enjoy God’s good gifts in moderation as though they were abusers, we misrepresent biblical Christianity. At bottom, it seems that biblical Christianity has a much different face than what much of modern Christianity wears. In many respects, we resemble more the ancient Pharisees than the Lord’s disciples."

Your thoughts?


Wade

ScriptureSearcher2 said...

ANN, ELIZABETH AND SEVERAL MORE OF YOUR CORRESPONDENTS HAVE OFFERED YOU SOME VERY GOOD AND WISE ADVICE.

brad reynolds said...

Wade
To revisit alcohol…John MacArthur is a pretty competent expositor. I shall quote excerpts from his 3 part message on this.

“Is drinking wine today the same as in Bible times?
Christians who drink point out that wine was commended in the Bible and assume it is therefore acceptable today. If drinking in biblical times is to be used as the basis for drinking today, the wine today should be the same as the wine used then. This deserves careful analysis.
A. The Biblical Words for Wine
1. Oinos/Yayin
The most common word in the New Testament for wine is the Greek word oinos. It is a general word that simply refers to the fermented juice of the grape. The Old Testament equivalent to the Greek word oinos is yayin, the root of which means to "bubble up" or "boil up." The 1901 Jewish Encyclopedia (vol. 12, p. 533) states that yayin, at least in the rabbinic period, was diluted with water….
a) The procedure
Wine stored as a liquid, however, would ferment. Professor Robert Stein, in his "Wine-drinking in New Testament Times" (Christianity Today, 20 June 1975: 9-11), tells us liquid wine was stored in large jugs called amphorae. The pure, unmixed wine would be drawn out of these jugs and poured into large bowls called kraters, where it was mixed with water. From these kraters, it would then be poured into kylix, or cups. Wine would never be served directly from the amphora without first being mixed. And according to other historical data on this period, the mixture could be as high as a 20:1 ratio or lower than 1:1.
b) The perception
Drinking unmixed wine was looked upon by Greek culture as barbaric. Stein quotes Mnesitheus of Athens as saying, "The gods have revealed wine to mortals, to be the greatest blessing for those who use it aright, but for those who use it without measure, the reverse. For it gives food to them that take it and strength in mind and body. In medicine it is most beneficial; it can be mixed with liquid and drugs and it brings aid to the wounded. In daily intercourse, to those who mix and drink it moderately, it gives good cheer; but if you overstep the bounds, it brings violence. Mix it half and half, and you get madness; unmixed, bodily collapse."

So, is drinking wine today the same as in Bible times? No.

Because of the lack of fresh water, it was often necessary to drink wine in biblical times. That is sometimes the case today. If you were in a country and wine was all there was and you were dying of thirst, you would take whatever was available.
A. The Past Necessity
In the New Testament, the Lord produced wine and spoke about drinking wine (John 2:1-11; Matt. 26:26-29). In the Old Testament as in the New, wine was used out of necessity. This was in a day and age when all they had to drink apart from wine was fruit juice, milk, and water. Due to a lack of refrigeration, even wine mixed from the syrup base, if left standing long enough, could ferment. These people had little choice in deciding what to drink.”

He gives much more evidence google “MacArthur and Be not Drunk with Wine” – there are 3 parts.

Further, since the Bible does not prohibit mind-altering drugs we should say moderation in taking Morphine, for enjoyment (if it was legal), is not wrong. (According to your hermeneutic). There is no prohibition is Scripture against slavery either, but the cultural context must be considered and so it is with alcohol!
BR

brad reynolds said...

Wade
The SB churches are autonomous but cooperate for missions with each other while holding to the essentials of the faith. The institutions do not tell the churches what to do, they tell the institutions.

As a convention we have only voted to refuse funds from two churches- both ordained homosexuals.

We have never refused funds from any church for their position on gambling, doctor-assisted suicide, or drinking alcohol. I think it would be very unwise to start. But to use the monies of the CP to pay for my alcoholic beverages at the local Bar and Grill would be wrong in my opinion.
BR

flounder said...

Wade,

Because we are working on meaningful covanental membership, we are revising our covenant and seeking to removed the extra-biblical requirements such as "will refrain from the use and sell of alcohol" or something like that.

I think if we can't quote chapter and verse, we ought to be a little more humble and more tolerant.

I am evolving on this. I am not where I was a year ago. Listening to Mark Driscoll was very influential.

Personally I hate drinking and believe there are cultural reasons to encourage people to abstain (America is not the land of moderation), but it will not be a requirement for membership at our church or the grounds for discipline. drunkenness yes, however.

I think our covenants have traditionally had a few "vices" that were not strongly supported in scripture. We're trying to keep it simple. There is enough in scripture without adding to it.

I don't think I'm ready to see our deacons at O'Charlies throwing back some cold ones. I'm not evolving that fast.

brad reynolds said...

Marty,
Sorry about missing your questions. I try to answer all that are asked of me...even though it dismays many on this Blog.

1. The “unbiblical method of moderation” is in reference to the constant statement of the “biblical method of moderation.” The latter statement is very misleading as MacArthur makes clear.
2. For a Christian organization (or for that matter any organization) to adhere to what they believe to be wise for cultural, relational, or organizational purposes or to adhere to what they believe to be high-standards is not the same as exalting tradition over the text.
3. I used the word “alien” because Wade used it.
4. No
BR

hashbrown said...

What about wearing hats in church?

Is there a verse about that?

Just curious. I know even non-legalists get pretty wound up when they see a guy come in with a baseball cap on.

Wade Burleson said...

Brad,

My word.

The laws of the land must be obeyed.

Further, I would agree that CP funds should not pay for alchohol.

That was never the issue. The issue was could CP funds pay the salary of someone who does not believe holds to the Biblical view of moderation.

I said yes.

Enough said Brad. I will not post any more on this issue or post your comments. Enough has been said.

Anonymous said...

Wade, I do agree with your proposed policy (but can we change our minds and disagree with it later :-) don't answer that!). You already seem to follow somewhat the second part. We do seem to chase rabbits frequently on your blog. So my next comment may be banned under the first part - though it is a reply to a comment:

To K.B.H. The first part of I Corinthians 11 may answer your question (though it doesn't specifically mention baseball caps, but does mention men wearing long hair which some also object to). We frequently hear the later part of this chapter, about the Lords Supper, but seldom the first part. Maybe because almost all of us would find something in the first part to quibble over. I would not like to have to let my hair grow long and cover my head all the time, but many readers here would be more bothered by the idea of women prophesying (the term is often interpreted to refer to preaching) and praying in public!

Susie

dlfj said...

I would like to publicaly apologize to Brad Reynolds for the unkind things I said about him. I spoke out of anger and did not display Christian love. Dr. Reynolds, I have sinned against you and against my Lord, may you both forgive me. I failed to remember that when I point my finger at someone else, there are three pointing back at me. I was wrong to say what I did. Please accept my sincere apology.

I am not a person of influence. I'm just a member of a small SB church who has forgoten that God is well aware of our situation and will deal with it in His time, and in His way. He needs no help from me to accomplish his will.

Once again, I apologize sincerly and with a heavy heart for my sin.

David Fisher

t. d. webb said...

Wade, the Lord has blessed you with of grace and patience in this blog post comment section. This Okie finally got through the thread after pausing for one snack break and TWO naps. In addition, there are so many rabbit trails in this comment's section that, before reading anything further, I seriously considered going down to the Bass Pro Shop to renew my hunting license.

This is not to say that the dialog has not been interesting. However, with some degree of trepidation this Okie will hazzard a few suggestions:

As a courtesy to Wade and everyone else reading this blog, please keep your comments short, consise, to the point, and on topic.

If you have time to post 14 or more comments on the same blog post, there is a strong likelihood that you can make time to learn the ropes in order to start your own blog. Otherwise, the thought comes to mind that someone might just be trying to hijack this blog.

To those of you who are using this blog as a vehicle to journal self-therapy needs, please find some other venue to vent your personal issues. (Realize the fact that if and when you find such a venue, you may be required to submit the relevant info to the IMB Executive Committee in time for a vote at the next BoT meeting on the issue. . . so that it can be determined whether one who seeks mental assistance on the internet has peremptorily disqualified himself/herself for service as a servant in the foreign mission field with the SBC (with a caveat that there will be a press release sometime in the next decade expressly detailing the rationale for such a decision). ;^)


In His Grace and Peace,
Tom

North Georgia Pastor said...

Dear Brother Wade,

Thank you for answering my questions last week. I have been out of pocket for a few days and it took me an hour to fully catch up on things. I agree that the conversation between you and Dr. Reynolds has been lengthy and at times tiring. However, it has been truly eye opening for me. It has caused me to search deep within my own soul and driven me to God’s Word for authoritative answers.

With that said, I am truly disappointed that you have repeatedly proclaimed your desire to “broaden the tent” which could let in people who do not hold to the BFM2000, yet you now refuse to post comments by Dr. Reynolds who does affirm the BFM2000.

Am I missing something? Have we gotten to a place where we would rather cooperate with people who do not hold God’s word in high esteem, and reject those how hold it dearly?

My dear brother, this ought not be!

NorthGeorgiaPastor

Anonymous said...

Brad,

You said:

"By the way I said I would Cooperate with a Calvinists - my exact words were OF COURSE. Please stop throwing the Calvinists thing around, or if you do say there is some leadership who refuse to Cooperate with Calvinist provide evidence - your signature on the Memphis Declaration as well as integrity requires such."

Well, easy examples of such people are not hard to find. If one were to attend chapel @ SWBTS, the spirit of cooperation with Calvinists is minimal at best. They are denigrated personally by Dr. Patterson and branded as little better than insane on more than one occasion. This claim is not hard to substantiate. Just ask any SWBTS student who has started in the last two years.

SWBTS Student

Anonymous said...

While Dr. Burleson is certainly my He also added that SBC leadership first choice for President of the SBC, I also have a great deal of respect for Dr. Page.

1. Dr. Page's churches have been committed to the cause of both local and world evangelization. In the area of world missions, few pastors' churches have been as actively involved in participating and giving in missional efforts.

2. Dr. Page is NOT someone who is simply jumping on the bandwagon. Two years ago I had a brief yet clear conversation with him about SBC leadership (and the good ole boy system). He made it clear to me that while he was conservative to the core but did not support the tactics and attitude of some of the SBC leadership (esp. behind the scenes). All that is to say that he is not simply jumping on the Wade Burleson bandwagon!!!

3. He has backbone. He is someone who will be willing and is capable to stand up to attacks from those who are remain blindly faithful to the good ole boys.

4. His churches have flourished under his leadership. I have personally witnessed the effects of his exemplary leadership at Warren Baptist Church and also at Taylors First Baptist Church.

5. If there is such a thing as a 'blended worship service,' then Dr. Page would be a 'blended SBC Prez.' It would be like the best of both worlds that could possibly foster in the next generation of younger leaders. Dr. Page is certainly not of the younger generation (aka Marty Duren) of leaders but is also equally discontent (from my experience) with the current situation.

5. My support for him is not without reservation. Certainly the way that he has expressed his views vis-à-vis Calvinism is certainly troubling. The usage of such derogatory language can lead to people feeling excluded that should not feel that way. Some of his views on Calvinism have certainly contributed to people feeling excluded. This is not to say that Reformed brethren have not also used non-friendly language towards non-Calvinists in the past. However, his recent comments in the Baptist Press article show that he is not crusading against Calvinism or Calvinists by allowing himself to be presented as President for the SBC:

“I want it to be very clear that it’s not about theology -- we’re both conservatives,” Page said of himself and Ronnie Floyd.

6. I think that the passion that Dr. Page brought to the Calvinist debate is just an example of his character. I strongly suspect that he will be equally passionate with regards to the presidency and to bringing about some of the much needed changes as discussed for months on this blog.

6. His passion and determination can and should be used to bring about change whether that is as President of the SBC or in a variety of other roles.


All of this said, Wade you still have my vote. If you do not allow yourself to be nominated, and given the current choice of candidates, Dr. Page would certainly get my vote today.

P.S. I have only spoken to Dr. Page one time and do not know his views on all matters. Most of my perspective comes from people that I have known from among the congregations that he has served.

Anonymous said...

Please omit the following words from the first line of my previous post:

He also added that SBC leadership

Thank you.