Today the course of the Southern Baptist Convention for at least the next two years, and possibly the next ten years will be set as the SBC in session in Greensboro, North Carolina will make several important decisions.
The Decisions That Will Be Made Today
The Presidential Election . . . There are at least three candidates with Frank Page leading the way. Frank Page's large church gives twelve percent to the Cooperative Program and he is a leading conservative in South Carolina
Jerry Sutton, another candidate, went on record yesterday saying that “Southern Baptists need a level playing field.” Sutton, citing the new policy against a "private prayer language" for missionaries, and acknowledgeing the IMB president holds to the practice said, “This is going to have to be addressed in the Baptist Faith and Message. I think there will have to be an amendment to it.”
Do you hear what Sutton is saying? I was absolutely, positively shocked.
A vote for Jerry Sutton is a vote for the continuing of the narrowing of the parameters of the Southern Baptist Convention. If Jerry Sutton were to be elected President the exclusionary, isolationist practices of the SBC will become more entrenched.
Dr. Ronnie Floyd is a good man and a good pastor. However, this is not a good year for Dr. Floyd to be running for President. His church's lack of support for the Cooperative Program (.27%) means he will not be elected President.
My prediction is Dr. Frank Page is elected President of the Southern Baptist Convention.
The Executive Committee Report . . . without going into detail today, there are some recommendations from the EC of the Southern Baptist Convention that are outstanding. Issues of conflict of interest, cronyism, and recycled nominations are all addressed in a bylaw ammendmant that will be presented to the Convention.
I predict this report and the address from Dr. Morris Chapman will be the talk of the day tomorrow, right behind the election of the President. I attended the Executive Committee meeting of the SBC Monday afternoon and there was a great deal of debate over the Ad Hoc Committee's report and recommendation on the Cooperative Program. Look for the debate to spill over onto the floor.
Various Motions and Resolutions Introduced . . . at 8:45 there is the first introduction of new motions from the floor of the convention. I expect that there will be several very interesting motions presented that the convention will be dealing with in the next 48 hours. Tonight I will blog extensively on my opinion of the motions presented.
Help Has Arrived
There are three quick reasons why I believe this convention could very well be a convention of significant change.
(1). Joyce Rogers . . . the wife of the late Dr. Adrian Rogers spoke tonight during the Pastor's Conference. She eloquently and passionately said what I have been saying for the last six months. She then said that if her late husband were alive he would be against "the narrowing of the parameters of cooperation within the Southern Baptist Convention." Her words were powerful and very meaningful. When she spoke, people listened.
(2). Ed Young . . . Though half the pastors left before the last message of the Pastor's Conference by Dr. Young, this erudite gave a RINGING endorsement of the IMB and Dr. Jerry Rankin, with facts in hand, vocalized loud and clear. Though I would not agree with all of everything else he said, he did speak courageously about key issues confronting us.
(3). The bloggers . . . The words of these men and women of the SBC are making a difference. People are reading (and listening).
It is 1:00 A.M. Tuesday morning. I must get up at 5:00 a.m. for an early morning breakfast. Today will be an eventful day.
Tonight I will post on what could be a very historic day in the life of the SBC.
In His Grace,