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

The SBCT-Texas International Mission Board

Baptist Press reported on the 2007 Southern Baptist of Texas Convention held in Arlington, Texas last week. I was interested in reading about the officers of the convention and the resolutions coming from the convention and the relationship each had with the International Mission Board.

The Officers

The immediate past President of the SBCT, Steve Swofford, is a current trustee of the International Mission Board.
The new President of the SBCT, Bob Pearle, just completed eight years of service as a trustee of the International Mission Board.
The new First Vice-President of the SBCT, Nathan Lino, is a current trustee of the International Mission Board.
The new Second Vice-President, Jimmy Pritchard, is a current trustee of the International Mission Board.

The Resolutions

Eight resolutions were passed, several of which speak directly at the mission and work of the International Mission Board.

First, the SBCT Resolution on the Role of the Baptist Faith and Message calls upon "all Southern Baptist entities to employ it as the minimum theological standard" in direct opposition to the Southern Baptist Convention's Garner Motion. The Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention said just this year regarding the Baptist Faith and Message:

"The Baptist Faith and Message is neither a creed, nor a complete statement of our faith, nor final and infallible; nevertheless, we further acknowledge that it is the only consensus statement of doctrinal beliefs approved by the Southern Baptist Convention and such is sufficient in its current form to guide trustees in their establishment of policies and practices of entities of the Convention."

If entities were to follow the SBCT Resolution instead of the Garner Motion and the understanding of the SBC Executive Committee, there would be all kinds of doctrinal policies implemented that exceed the BFM 2000. These policies then would exclude otherwise qualified Southern Baptists, who affirm the BFM, from missionary service, and narrows the doctrinal parameters of cooperation at the whims of individual trustee boards - like what is happening.

Second, the SBCT Resolution on the Importance of Sound Doctrine for True Unity states "churches, denominations, and conventions have compromised their doctrinal distinctives in modern days in an ecumenical attempt to include people by excluding sound doctrinal principles" Those who are familiar with the papers of Keith Eitel, missions professor at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, know that some criticize IMB administration, feeling that our missionarys' are being led to cooperate with other Great Commission Christians on the mission fields, and as a result, there is growing doctrinal compromise.

Third, the SBCT Resolution on Evangelistic Outreach states that "we acknowledge the necessity for all Southern Baptists to be in the world but not of the world and therefore distinct from the culture without abrogating our God-given responsibility to reach the culture"

The Principles of Contextualization recently adopted at the IMB arose out of a fear of some that some missionaries may be watering down the gospel by adapting too much to the culture in which they lived and were contextualizing the gospel beyond appropriate Biblical parameters to reach varying people groups.

Fourth, the SBCT Resolution Reaffirming Regenerate Church Membership states "a New Testament church is formed through covenant by a group of Christians intentionally gathering in the name of Jesus Christ and under his lordship (Matthew 18:19-20; Colossians 2:10, 19); and WHEREAS, baptism of only believers by immersion in the Triune name is the only proper means of entering a local New Testament church . . . "

The above resolution reaffirms that there is no true church but a Baptist church - one who understands the ordinance of baptism properly. It implies there is no other church under the Lordship of Christ but a Baptist church (one who obeys the ordinance of baptism properly). It also affirms there are only local Baptist churches - implying there is such thing as a universal church, or Bride of Christ, that encompasses all true followers of Jesus Christ whether they have been properly baptized or not.

Finally, the Resolution on Alchohol Abstinence states that all elected officials and trustees from the SBCT will vow to abstain from alcohol as a beverage. (Correction: The resolution on abstinence passed last year. This year the resolution became a bylaw change. The SBCT is working hard to codify their resolutions (wink)).

Conclusions

There are very eerie similarities between what is happening at the Southern Baptist Convention of Texas and the International Mission Board.

I would suggest if we desire to continue to narrow the doctrinal parameters of Southern Baptist missions and ministry cooperation beyond the 2000 Baptist Faith and Message; if we desire to have more and more doctrinal policies added to the 'minimal standard' of the BFM 2000 for requirements of service at our SBC agencies; if we desire to isolate ourselves from Christians who are not Baptist on the mission fields; if we desire to recognize only Baptist churches as true churches; if we wish to force a vow of abstinance upon all Southern Baptists; if we wish to emphasize doctrinal purity in tertiary matters to the neglect of evangelistic cooperation; if we wish to continue to ignore the wishes of the Southern Baptist Convention as expressed at our annual meetings . . . then . . .

Let's elect more SBCT leaders as IMB trustees. Good men, all, but seemingly insistent that all Southern Baptists conform to their ideological, philosophical and theological ideals - and willing to do everything necessary to ensure this conformity occurs.

In His Grace,


Wade

Update: It seems some think I have erred in writing SBCT instead of SBTC. I have not. I believe it is more accurate to identify are neighbors to the south as the Southern Baptist Convention of Texas instead of Southern Baptists of Texas Convention. The first recognizes our brothers to the south can do as they please - for they are their own convention. The latter implies they are typical of all Southern Baptists. I prefer to identify our brothers and sisters to the south as the SBCT.

109 comments:

Jack Maddox said...

Wade

Since I Pastor a SBTC (Not SBCT as you erroneously call it) church let me the first to comment.

1) The SBTC is not a Satellite of the SBC, therefore the "Garner" resolution is not binding on our convention. We are a autonomous body of church's who voluntarily cooperate with the SBC - What the SBC does or does not do is non binding on us.

2) Since you Pastor a church in Oklahoma, you really don’t have to worry to much about us little old Texans...as a Texas Pastor, I am not sweating what the good Baptist folks of Oklahoma are up to.

On a side note, I would have thought you would have been pleased with the Regenerate church membership resolution?

blessings
jrm

Darby Livingston said...

Even allowing for partially unregenerate membership, there's still a lot of Southern Baptists. But you wouldn't know it by the denominational inbreeding throughout SBC entities. I've heard one knows everyone in America within seven or eight people. I have a feeling one knows every Southern Baptist leader within two.

Jack Maddox said...

Wade

Hate to be a bother, but you stated

"Finally, the Resolution on Alchohol Abstinence states that all elected officials and trustees from the SBCT will vow to abstain from alcohol as a beverage."

Can you direct to me to that resolution from this year, or are you refering to the resolution passed in Austin the previous year? Perhaps it came form the floor when I was out of the hall. It is not on the list of resolutions you linked to...

I don't recall the aclohol issue coming up in our resolutions this year, but hey, I was just a messenger, you would know more about it than me I suppose.

jrm

Jack Maddox said...

wade

Why your looking for the resolution
you might check this out, from the BP article you linked to

"Messengers approved a change in the SBTC bylaws concerning the term "drunkenness," as it appears in several instances, to "the use of alcohol as a beverage." The change stipulates that drinking is unacceptable for SBTC staff and members elected to the SBTC executive board, committees and offices."

sooooo....that would be a by law change Bro. Burleson, not a resolution. But if you want to attack a sister State convention for a requirement for her "Leaders" then be my guest!

jrm

Anonymous said...

Jack typed:

". . . is not a Satellite of the SBC, . . . We are a autonomous body of church's who voluntarily cooperate with the SBC - What the SBC does or does not do is non binding on us . . ."


Glad to know it about the SBTC; of course, it also applies to the BGCT--but that convention gets chastised in Texas for having stood on the same principles . . . Interesting.

B Nettles said...

Wade,
I just keep wondering (not really) how the same people end up on committeee after committee. Kind of reminds me of C. S. Lewis's The Inner Ring.

May the Lord protect me from wanting to be in there.

Only By His Grace said...

Jack,

while you are correcting Wade for "SBTC" not "SBCT", you might want to look at your possessive pronoun "your" when you should have used the contraction, "you're" "you are.

When we get so picky and trite about these little things, it just makes us look littler.

I am much interested in Texas since I was a Pastor for twenty years in the Golden Triangle and twenty five here in Oklahoma; sometimes I feel like a foreign missionary must feel in either one of them.

Only By His Grace

Phil Ratliff.

Bart Barber said...

Wade,

As someone involved in the resolutions process, I can assure you that you are far away from the mark. The resolution On the Role of the Baptist Faith & Message does indeed express opinions that are germane to the work of the IMB (as it suggests a robust role for our statement of faith), but there is where your accuracy ends.

The resolution on Evangelistic Outreach and Pioneer Missions speaks solely from a heart for engaging underengaged areas for the gospel. That such a positive resolution on such a worthy topic at such a critical juncture could be used as a javelin rather than a standard is sad indeed. Thank heavens it was not brought to BGCO to be ruled out of order!

The resolution on Regenerate Church Membership is much needed, and I hope that many will be encouraged that a Southern Baptist body (the first of many, I hope) has acknowledged this need.

We considered no resolution regarding alcohol, as Jack has so accurately indicated above.

The resolution on the Importance of Sound Doctrine for True Unity was championed and authored by someone uninvolved in recent controversies, unaffiliated with the IMB, unengaged in blogging, and (I would presume) unknown by you. Feel free to critique the "attitude," because I assure you that you will find not one chink in the biblical foundation that this saint laid for the principles advocated therein.

Most spiritually challenging and rewarding to me was the resolution on Christian Civility, submitted initially from outside the committee. I read through it before posting this comment, and plan to keep it accessible for frequently consultation in my blogging endeavors.

Bart Barber said...

Correction: SBTC is not the first Southern Baptist body to affirm regenerate church membership. And I did not mean that it was. Merely that I would love to see this exact resolution considered and adopted in other places as well.

Scott Gordon said...

Bart,

Amen.

Wade,

Given you dispositions and or predispositions, I almost had a church which would've been interested in you...but alas, FBC Shawnee just called a past who was a former staff at the BGCT.

Maybe next time.

Sola Gratia.

Scott Gordon said...

...called a pastor (not a past).

oops?

sg!

Jack Maddox said...

only by his grace

thank you for correcting my poor grammar. Your correction was much needed and is appreciated. When one is incorrect, they should be kindly brought to task. You will find that I commit many grammatical errors. It is as troubling to me as it is you. I apologize. I will certainly try to do better.

As far as pointing out insignificant errors, I must agree it can make one look rather small. Kind of like pointing out the overuse of exclamation points in written statements.

We can only hope Bro Wade will also work as diligently to improve his inaccuracies also.

The other Jack said...

Oh, good grief.

Yes it is “SBTC” not “SBCT.” -Minor mistake.

And yes, "Messengers approved a change in the SBTC bylaws concerning the term "drunkenness," as it appears in several instances, to "the use of alcohol as a beverage." The change stipulates that drinking is unacceptable for SBTC staff and members elected to the SBTC executive board, committees and offices." – instead of passing a resolution. The effect is still the same. Southern Baptists who consume alcohol but do not commit the sin of drunkenness are sub-Christians, unworthy of serving on your boards, committees and as office-holders. Good going, guys – you’ve just set standards that would disqualify Jesus and his Apostles. Very Biblical.

You pass a resolution affirming "the (BF&M) as an "instrument of doctrinal accountability" for all Southern Baptist entities to employ as the minimal theological standard, while also noting the appropriateness of entities adopting and enforcing "additional theological standards" as part of the unique responsibility of trustee boards."

This – of course – is the opposite of what messengers representing the entire convention approved through the Garner Motion.

You defend this action because “The SBTC is not a Satellite of the SBC, therefore the "Garner" resolution is not binding on our convention. We are a autonomous body of churches who voluntarily cooperate with the SBC - What the SBC does or does not do is non binding on us.” I guess this is the theological equivalent of a certain politician who once defended his actions by saying “No Controlling Legal Authority” over and over.

People saw through that then and I suspect most SBC’ers will see through your statement now. I am reminded of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s famous pronouncement that ““The louder he spoke of his honesty, the faster we counted our silverware.”

Finally, I find it disingenuous that the SBTC resolution contains a "weasel" clause for the folks who contribute to the CP while you continue to demand more and more restrictions be placed upon those allowed to receive those funds.

"RESOLVED, that, although we believe the contents of The Baptist Faith & Message to be grounded in biblical truth, we affirm the unabridged liberty of any individual who has not voluntarily entered a fiduciary or employee relationship with the Southern Baptist Convention or any of its entities to accept or reject, in part or in total, the tenets expressed in The Baptist Faith & Message."

.-Don't want to upset the folks with the checkbooks in the pews perhaps?

Tell you what, if you really believe in all the extra-biblical restrictions you are placing on those who serve in any leadership role or as missionaries… then why don’t you have the guts to impose those same standards on your congregations who foot the bills for your little kingdom?

Thank you for so clearly demonstrating what all these squabbles are really about is MONEY & POWER.

-Now excuse me while I continue counting my silverware….

Bart Barber said...

Except, of course, the Garner motion didn't say that.

if it did, then Southern Seminary must be in quite a quandary. Do they violate their charter (requiring affirmation of the Abstract of Principles, which has never been adopted by the SBC) or do they thumb their noses at the SBC?

But Kentucky lawyers are not scurrying around trying to sort it all out, because there is no such problem…because the Garner motion said no such thing.

The great thing, in my opinion, about the resolution that the other Jack has highlighted—indeed, about all of the resolutions and motions we adopted—is that they state plainly what they are and what they want to accomplish. No coy little wink-and-nod phrases to hoodwink people into voting for something other than what they meant to say. I encourage everyone to click Wade's link and go read them for yourself. You may agree. You may disagree. But you'll know precisely what the SBTC has said.

Unlike a certain motion in San Antonio.

Hershael W York said...

Wade:

I must dispute the following characterization of an IMB action:

"The Principles of Contextualization recently adopted at the IMB arose out of a fear of some that missionaries were watering down the gospel by adapting too much to the culture in which they lived and were contextualizing the gospel beyond appropriate Biblical parameters to reach varying people groups."

Not once did I ever hear anyone on the Board speak of IMB missionaries watering down the gospel. The whole contextualization discussion arose because of concerns about methodology and some related issues, but no one suggested that missionaries were "watering down the gospel." I correct this because I would hate for our missionaries who read your comments to think that. That was not my concern and not once did I ever hear anyone express that they think that was happening. I have been thoroughly impressed with our whole process and have every confidence that our missionaries are presenting the gospel with integrity.

The other Jack said...

-So your motions “state plainly what they are and what they want to accomplish. No coy little wink-and-nod phrases to hoodwink people into voting for something other than what they meant to say?”

Ah yes; the diabolical dishonesty of Wade Burleson & his minions --- placing a motion approved by the Executive Committee of The Southern Baptist Convention on the floor of the Convention for a vote by all of the messengers (who, of course, were too stupid to realize what they were voting upon)…

But you are “an. autonomous body of churches who voluntarily cooperate with the SBC - What the SBC does or does not do is non binding on us.” No Controlling Legal Authority! No Controlling Legal Authority!

-I seem to be missing quite a bit of silverware….

Jack Maddox said...

the other jack

You make such good sence that I take it all back. Thank you for fixing me. Little did I know that what I thought were biblical convictions and a desire to STAND on biblical principles was nothing more than a desire for MONEY AND POWER. I need to let up and let go of the people who are financing my "LITTE KINGDOM"

by the way jack...did you read our resolution of Christian civility?

jrm

Jack Maddox said...

hey the other jack

silverware aint all your missing brother!

(just a joke...just a joke)

jrm

The Other Jack said...

-And a good one at that.

Blessings,

The Other Jack

Anonymous said...

WHICH BF&M is being referred to? 2000? 1925? 1963?

I accessed the website, but didn't find which version is being referred to.

Veteran IMB'er

Anonymous said...

Wow...some of this is really interesting stuff. Sounds just like a lot of the same stuff that is happening in KY from what I can tell. Their last 2 presidents have been both SBTS faculty as well as IMB board members (Drs. Chitwood and York). But this year, the newly "elected" president (who received his nomination speech by Dr. York) is Dr. Bill Hennard. He too is SBTS faculty, but don't worry, he's not on the IMB BoT...he's the chair of LifeWay's BoT.

Why does it seem to me that a denomination with over 42,000 reported churches is controlled by such a ridiculously small group of people who keep popping up on all the boards, state presidencies, seminary-staff, etc...

If looked into further, there will be the obvious additions to these examples, such as the Patterson-Kelley connection (NOBTS/SWBTS). But on the more local level, the amount of nepotism and "croneyism" going on in SBC life is plain ridiculous.

The reigns are held by an increasingly smaller and smaller group. Is it any wonder that there was such a terrible turnout by messengers this year? The ABP story reported that there were less than 1000 messengers at this meeting for the first time since 1974. You kind of get the sense that no one comes out anymore because everyone knows that all the decisions have already been made ahead of time.

Check out the story for yourself: http://www.westernrecorder.org/wr/wrsite.nsf/stories/200746-KBC-Elections

Seems like dark days are ahead for many states.

Anonymous said...

In the 16th century the word “bigot” was used to refer to French Normans who conquered England. The word itself came from a common Norman oath which used the Lord’s name in vain.

In the 17th century the word bigot came to refer to a religious hypocrite, especially a woman.

In the 20th century the word bigot came to mean somebody with strong opinions, especially on politics, religion, or ethnicity, who refuses to accept different views

In the 21st century, there are some Texas Baptists who, like Jesus and his disciples, partake of alcoholic beverages. For convenience let’s call them “Lite Christians.”

Other Texas Baptists, who do not partake of alcoholic beverages, have voted to exclude Lite Christians from service on the SBTC staff and from any SBTC executive board, committee or office. Let’s call these Texans, “Elite Christians.”

The Elite Christians have also rejected a proposal to permit their affiliation with Southern Baptist churches outside the state of Texas. The Elite Christians have also made it clear that they are not sweating what the good Baptist folks of Oklahoma (Lite Christians) are up to. Nor, apparently, even what the Southern Baptist Convention (the largest Protestant denomination in the United States and the second largest grouping of Christians in the United States) is up to when it established its latest Baptist Faith and Message.

Which brings us back to what the English used to say about the Normans, i.e., “You can tell a bigot, but you can’t tell him much.”

Interested Observer

Robert said...

Isn't anyone in Texas just a little uneasy at the thought that the non-alcohol regulation officially excludes the Head of the Church from the Convention?

No, not Paige and Bart - I meant the old Bible one, what was His name again...?

Anonymous said...

Correction to above:

Many Lite Christians (in Oklahoma and Texas) do not partake of the fruit of the vine. However, they are willing to tolerate and not shun their fellow Lite Christians who do partake.

Interested Observer

irreverend fox said...

I'm amazed at what stirs state conventions around the SBC...I thank God that in Ohio such nonsense is not being batted around. The only thing I hear about in our associations and in our state convention is THE GREAT COMMISSION.

I thank God for our executive director, Dr. Jack Kwok. I've got little clue what his personal convention slant is...because he keeps it to himself. Under his leadership we keep our eyes on the ball around here.

When you're not in the Bible belt your priorities must naturally be more clear.

Rex Ray said...

Wade,
Steve Swofford was our associate pastor at one time in a city we have both moved from. We went on several mission trips to the ‘valley’ (next to Mexico.)

I should have suspected his convention (SBTC) would split from the old convention (BGCT) as we had opposite sleeping doctrine.

I chose to get under the covers to start, but not him…he’d wake in the middle of the night freezing.
I asked him why, and he replied because it felt so good to cover up.

Reminded me of the guy, when asked why he was hitting himself in the head with a hammer, replied: “Because it feels so good when I stop.”

To understand the mind-set of the SBTC today, you have to understand the attitude of fundamentalists have toward non-fundamentalists.

What their first president, Miles Seaborn, said is revealing: “Every one of us is a warrior to preserve God’s inerrant word and he would not give another nickel of his tithe to anywhere he thought was ungodly.”

I suppose he means if you don’t believe in the word “inerrant”, you are ungodly.


I heard at one SBC, “We have our inerrancy and no one is going to take it away from us!”
I’ll bet his yell was louder than “Long live our god, Diana!”

Also, their executive director, Jim Richards said, “Theological agreement will be the first foundation of the new Convention. Those who depart theologically will be identified and called to repent. To the foes of Southern Baptist of Texas, we say, we’re not in competition with you, but we’ve been called to contrast you.”

I thought the first foundation of any Christian organization was to win souls, but “called to contrast you [foes]” seems to be a declaration of war.

They went on to say that anyone who was a friend of the SBC was a friend of theirs.

‘Anonymous’ said, “Why does it seem to me that a denomination with over 42,000 reported churches is controlled by such a ridiculous small group of people who keep popping up on all the boards, state presidencies, seminary-staff, etc…”

Let’s see, Seaborn became a trustee at SWBTS, and Richards is now vice-president of the SBC

AS-I-SEE-IT said...

I am at a loss of words (almost). Is wine the problem in the SBC (Tx or otherwise)?

Ga Baptist ... band blogging
Tx Baptist ... pure churches
Fl Baptist ... no drinking
Nc Baptist ... WMU kiss off

Let me see. We have kissed off our colleges, hospitals, etc. Most of them bailed out on their own.

One church gives all its mission money to Lottie. Really, that is their business. Just sharing what I read. If they are led to do that ... great. It is a congregational thing ... right? Nobody tells a local group of belivers what to do ... right?

After all these years we have three choices: (1) the local church does its thing, the local association does its thing, the state convention does its thing, and the national convention does its thing. As a famous radio guy says "the rest of the story" ... I ponder the future of these areas of SBC life. What will the rest of the story for Southern Baptist ... for future readers?

Boy, have we Southern Baptist got it together. Really, really, really ... do we have a Great Comission Concept or what?

Thanks for the post. I am sure I do not understand all of the hidden meanings.

Troy

Bob Cleveland said...

I think the best comment I've ever seen on my own blog was the following remark, in response to my latest post:

"Geez.

And I thought we Episcopalians had issues."


I'm still laughing over THAT one.

Darby Livingston said...

Fox,

I am thankful that we don't have any of the weirdness in Indiana either (yet). I am so thankful for our state exec and staff and assoc. missionaries. I truly believe the priority of our leadership is a passion for the Gospel and the lost of our state. And since I'm right on the Ohio/Indi line, with many members from Ohio, I'm thankful for Ohio as well.

Anonymous said...

Wow...Reading this cat fight has my head spinning.
But, all the time I'm reading it I'm thinking of the prayer Jesus prayed recorded in John 17:20-23. What do you think would happen to the IMB, SBTC, etc, if the leadership would pray along with the Lord for a month? I just wonder....
Blessing on all as they pray,
--Jerald

Anonymous said...

yjeksoCome on other Jack. You must be some theologian. How dare ye link The Lord Jesus Christ and His Apostles to those who think that alcoholic beverages are permissable in a New Testament Church. Have you ever known a drunk who was not first a social drinker? Are drunks born drunks or do they evolve into it?
Jim Sadler

Anonymous said...

Other Jack. yjekso was as error disregard.
JIm S

Jack Maddox said...

I really appreciate all of the comments insulting the SBTC and her leaders. Most of this comes from people who are not a part of the SBTC. As far as Kingdom Focused, I do not know of any State association that has more focus than we do. Our meetings are filled with a sweet spirit, our conventions are mostly preaching and singing, our programs are directed towards winning a lost World and a lost state to Jesus. Our new Pastor's conference President is Greg Matte, hardly ones definition of a Fundamentalist. Yet we are taken to task because of our stance on Alcohol for our LEADERS. We are chastised for a resolution that is non binding on regenerate church membership, we are laughed at and scorned because we voted to only allow Texas church's to be a part of our TEXAS convention. (Go figure!) One Poster even calls by name Brothers in Christ and insults them when he himself is not a member of a church that is a part of the SBTC. At our convention you will not hear ONE WORD about the BGCT or any other State convention for that matter. We have a policy that is enforced that we are not to talk negatively about other conventions or entities. Yet we are attacked, insulted and made fun of, and all by people who really have no position or place in our convention.

Folks, if you don't like the SBTC and what she stands for, and if you are not a part of the SBTC, why slander the SBTC? Its kind of like me getting all stirred up over the what the Methodist do and spending time and ink ranting on about it. It aint gonna happen because it aint non of my business!

I simply will not be a Methodist.

jrm

Wade Burleson said...

Jack,

Not insults, just diaologue.

:)

Wade Burleson said...

Insults come when you imply Southern Baptists who are not like you are Methodists and then seek to exclude them from SBC missionary and minisstry participation. But folks like me don't take offense at those insults because we have learned to love our brothers and that love covers a multitude of insults.

We just keep on hanging around, challenging what we believe is wrong, and taking our brothers who feel they have been insulted to dinner.

Blessings to you Jack,

Wade

Wade Burleson said...

Hershael,

With respect, I must correct you. Without naming the book, and without producing the written concerns we received and heard over the content of the book due to Executive Session rules, the Principles of Contextualization arose to ensure the gospel is not watered down by our missionaries.
I'm sure that a professor does not mind being corrected himself. What I write is accurate. By the way I voted for the principles, so I am not saying they are bad - just giving the source from where they came.

Blessings to you,

Wade

Wade Burleson said...

By the way Hershael,

I have stated from the beginning of this blog that our missionaries are presenting the gospel with integrity - in all parts of the world - with a love for the peoples of the world.

I am glad to know that you agree with my assessment and I trust you will convince your fellow trustees and at least a couple of our seminary Presidents of the integrity of our missionaries in sharing the gospel.

With the two of us, I do believe we will be able to accurately present the picture of the great state of our missions organization and the absolutely illogical and irrational ploy of adopting 'doctrinal' policies that exceed the BFM 2000 in order to purify the doctrinal understanding of our missionaries and ensure the gospel is shared with integrity.

Hershael, where have you been? Thanks for jumping on board.

:)

Wade

Jack Maddox said...

Wade

I really did not direct my comments to you per se. I do think your take on the convention is about was backwards as Hillary’s position of health care, but at least you cloak your feelings in some degree of civility. However, when posters start calling posters by name who were former staff members, impugning their character, and basically calling into question their honesty...and then others make laughable biblical convictions, simply because they do not hold the same conviction, that is WRONG.

The whole mantra of this little resistance movement is nothing more than attack, insult, impugn and disparage. Although the words may not come from your mouth Wade, you must bear some responsibility.

jrm

Wade Burleson said...

Hershael,

I say this respectfully. For you not to see that THE issue is that our missionaries are NOT pure enough DOCTRINALLY - and thus - new DOCTRINAL policies are needed to help keep our missionaries 'doctrinally' sound is the whole reason we are in this mess.

I say we accept the BFM 2000 as the doctrinal standard of our cooperation.

Bob Cleveland said...

Some years ago (30+?) I watched an episode of the John Ankerberg Show. One of his guests stated that sin wasn't a "bucket of stuff" you could define, set in the middle of the room, and examine. He made the statement that sin was man's misuse of what God had created.

Perhaps man's desire to find some thing external to blame sin on, is why we focus on the results of man's misuse of wine, etc., and make it the cause of the sin. So we pontificate against its use under any circumstances, when we rarely do so with reference to other tools of our sinful nature.

That's like saying "Money is the root of all evil".

Anybody ever say we ought to boycott its use, or refuse to have anything to do with its manufacture or distribution?

How about prescription drugs? Shall we boycott Pfizer, Lilly, et al?

Debbie Kaufman said...

Insults come when you imply Southern Baptists who are not like you are Methodists and then seek to exclude them from SBC missionary and minisstry participation. But folks like me don't take offense at those insults because we have learned to love our brothers and that love covers a multitude of insults.

Exactly.

Anonymous said...

jack maddox:

Glad to hear it (bottom of your first paragraph posted 9 comments above in this long thread).

Your state convention is a girl? Interesting.

Jack Maddox said...

annonymous

very insighful observation. Yes,the SBTC is a girl...but we aint gonna ordain her! : )

jrm

Bob Cleveland said...

Jack Maddox:

You said to Wade: "...at least you cloak your feelings in some degree of civility...".

Do you thereby express the belief that his civility is a "cloak" for feelings that are uncivil?

Jack Maddox said...

Bob

Yes

but it is only my opinion and not worth much more than that. I do not feel that Wade feels nearly as 'civil' about this whole ordeal as he states. Again, my subjective opinion.

I often times in my life and ministry have "Cloaked" my hurt and anger so that I might respond in a civil manner to those with whom I have had altercations and disagreements.

Jack

Tom Parker said...

While making the resolutions why not one on gluttony. I personally do not drink but would not make that a requirement of another fellow believer or even one in a Christian leadership position as I am not going to know whether they drink or not because I will leave that to them and the Lord.

Wade Burleson said...

Jack,

I can assure you my feelings match my words.

Blessings,

wade

Bry M. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jack said...

anonymous said "How dare ye link The Lord Jesus Christ and His Apostles to those who think that alcoholic beverages are permissible in a New Testament Church."

-Ever read about the Last Supper; Jesus turning water into wine?

Drinking is not a sin; drunkenness is.

Having said that, I have no quarrel with those who choose to abstain.

My quarrel is with those who perform theological gymnastics to "prove" their position is biblical when it is not.

My quarrel is with those who go beyond scripture to impose standards on others that Jesus Christ did not impose on himself or his followers.

My quarrel is with those wish to impose the culture and traditions of man on others in the name of God.

Having said that, I would be happy to serve the cause of Christ in fulfilling The Great Commission alongside you -- if you would let me.

Bry M. said...

I am reading these comments and wondering how we have come to this point. I could be wrong but it seems to me that most of our strongly held opinions, that we are in disagreement upon, goes beyond the plain teaching of the scriptures. It is when we start adding to the scriptures the cultural taboos and traditions of men that we have most of our divisions. There is nothing wrong with adhering to certain traditions but when we try to make these binding upon all is when the trouble begins. I often see written in the comments “we are becoming more like the Catholics”. I assume they are speaking of the Roman Catholics. I can understand that statement if they are referring to the RC church’s practice of adding to the written word of God. I have been reading with great interest, The Catechism of the Catholic Church. It is a great document of over 700 pages, most of which Baptist would have no disagreement over. It is the added ten percent, more or less, which that goes beyond what the scripture seems to clearly teach that bothers me. It seems to me that Baptist do the same thing when we add rules that go beyond the plain statements of scripture. These are most often cultural in origin rather than the plain teaching of scripture. I was once a member of a church that seemed to spend more time on the length of men’s hair and women wearing pants than the death, burial and resurrection of our Lord. That is extreme but they were very serous and almost convinced me as a young man.

NativeVermonter said...

With all this talk of Texas it reminds me of the lady who had to address the proud Texan who simply would not stop talking about his state. Finally, the Texan asked the lady where she was from and she stated: "Alaska, and we're thinking of dividing the state in half so Texas would be the third biggest state." :) Just funnin' Jack, I talk about Vermont just as much. Of course my St. Louis friends say: "If you're in St. Louis, who's watching the state?" Just a quick thought, if regenerate church membership doesn't get some air play this year--I'm writing my "congressman," could we please get some backbone in the SBC, we're getting flabby around our spiritual mid-section. I shutter when I think of how many precious one's are dancing close to the flames as they rest in their church membership and not resting in Christ.

Anonymous said...

Pastor Maddox,

Back in the day, when the question of slavery became a dividing wall, the Southern Baptist Convention was established (1845). At the time, Texas Baptists were emphatically confident that the Bible supported their belief that slavery was not sinful and they wished to part company with their fellow Baptists who did not agree with them.

Similarly, it seems to me, the SBTC is now undertaking to establish new dividing walls between itself and broader SBC policies set out in the BFM 2000 by discriminating against other Southern Baptists in a number of important ways.

With the benefit of hindsight, what is your view of the responsibility of non SBC Baptists in 1845 to call into question the SBC view of separating from other Baptists on the issue of slavery? Do you acknowledge that the situation in 1845 is parallel in at least some ways to the SBTC’s actions today?

BTW, I think you should be commended for your earnest courtesy and and willingness to participate in this discussion.

Interested Observer

Jack Maddox said...

Wade

I hope so : )

Vermonter

Wade brought up Texas...not me...Wade, like most folks from Okieville love to talk about Texas!
: )

Interested Observer

With a last name like observer, your folks should not have names you Interested...thats just cruel!
(Kidding : ) )

In regards to the analogy, I think it a poor one concerning the issues we aree dealing with. However, I realize that this to is also subject to opinion. My problem is not with folks disagreeing or calling into question policies that the SBTC implement...my concern in with the misrepresentationof their motives, their character, and their honesty. Wades "take' on our resolutions is only his opinion yet he pines them as FACT. He builds a straw man of landmarkism and Militant "spooky" fundamentalism and then seeks to paint us as a convention that is in lock step with his charactuer of it.

As far as slavery, I will admit that the culture in which we find ourselves can often color our theology.

jrmWade

I hope so : )

Vermonter

Wade brought up Texas...not me...Wade, like most folks from Okieville love to talk about Texas!
: )

Interested Observer

With a last name like observer, your folks should not have named you Interested...that’s just cruel!
(Kidding : ) )

In regards to the analogy, I think it a poor one concerning the issues we are dealing with. Apples and oranges, However, I realize that this to is also subject to opinion. My problem is not with folks disagreeing or calling into question policies that the SBTC implement...my concern is with the misrepresentation of their motives, their character, and their honesty by folks who could not know the heart of this convention because they are not a part of it. My problem with this little rebellion has always been the methods, not the message. Wades "take' on our resolutions is only his opinion yet he opines them as FACT. He builds a straw man of landmarkism and Militant "spooky" fundamentalism and then seeks to paint us as a convention that is in lock step with his caricature of it.

As far as slavery, I will admit that the culture in which we find ourselves can often color our theology. It was true then and certainly is true today.

jrm

Jack Maddox said...

woops....sorry bout the double paste there folks! The second one is spell checked

(blushing}

jrm

Bryan Riley said...

This comment in the string pretty much says it all:

Wade,

Given you dispositions and or predispositions, I almost had a church which would've been interested in you...but alas, FBC Shawnee just called a past who was a former staff at the BGCT.

Sola gratia,

Allow me to translate:

Since you don't think like us, Wade, why don't you get out.

Only one way to think and I know it,

Wade Burleson said...

Scott Gordon,

It was nice meeting you at the convention. I can't tell if you are attempting to denigrate FBC, Shawnee, the BGCT, or possibly me in your comment.

Regardless, the Lord's blessings to you.

Wade

bryan riley said...

I don't know why I just did that. Sorry for the reactive comment. That may have not meant that at all. Which goes to show you how we can misinterpret things written. When will we be delivered?

Scott Gordon said...

It seems I struck a chord (you decide if its cordant or discordant).

Bryan,

Thanks for the retract on the reactionary comment.

Wade,

I truly was glad to meet you at this week's convention meeting. And, thanks for introducing me to Benjamin. My comment stems from a concern in what I perceive as a bias in your posts (one which I see echoed from ones like the current youth pastor and new pastor at FBC Shawnee). It seems to me that many posts on your blog strike a discordant tone with the rest of the conservative voice within our conventions (state and national). I don't believe that I have ever seen a post or a comment which carries criticism for those whose major platform is the denigrating and weaking of biblical authority (CBF, BGCT, 'Mainstream' "Baptists"). I'm not looking for parity, just for an understanding of your leanings. You claim to be very much a conservative, owing much to the CR within our conventions...but the vast majority of your advocates online stem from the 'moderate' & liberal leaning CBF etc. You wish to be seen as 'hesitant' to speak in dissent and then rabid to kick against the goads of the BGCO, IMB, SBC, etc. You wish to stir up the SBTC and laud the BGCT. I'm not looking for unbending cloning in the conservative camp. I consider myself to be a friend of Bart, Wes, Robin...and others with whom I do not hold 100% agreement on all points of doctrine, but we are together for the sake of the Gospel.

Just thought you should know from where this young, and growing pastor (and I say those two things honestly...not as a sarcastic jab) is coming.

SOLA GRATIA!

Anonymous said...

My church is a very conservative Texas Baptist church who happens to be in the BGCT. due to the mess that the BGCT has made of itself the past couple of years, we had been considering the possibility of dually aligning with the SBTC. We would probably stay at least partially with the BGCT due to many of the great ministries they support (Buckner, the colleges, etc) As we meet with our pastor, missions committee and stewardship committee I will argue against the dual alignment. It seems to me that the SBTC's desire is to out SBC the SBC in restricting those who might be "eligible" for service.

Just as I think the BGCT has been shooting themselves in the foot over the years, I think the SBTC has really shot themselves in the foot with these resolutions/actions.

I believe that in the future, our church will be more involved in our own church plants and mission activities - we have already started, and have seen many come to the Lord as a result.

Jim Champion

Tom Parker said...

Scott:

That is a mighty big brush you are using in saying, "those whose major platform is the denigrating and weakening of biblical authority, (CBF, BGCT, 'Mainstream' "Baptists"). It saddens me how we label people because when we do it makes fellowship and cooperation almost impossible.

Wade Burleson said...

Scott,

I am attempting to help all young and growing pastors to recgnize that you have brothers, conservative in theology and Christ-centric in lifestyle who may not see eye to eye on your interpretation of tertiary matters (cessationism, prohibition, closed communion, etc . . .), and it is to the detriment of all when there are efforts to exclude fellow Southern Baptists who do not confrom to your particular interpretations.

That's all.

Eventually, those of us who continue to be kind, civil and dialogue with genuine pleasantness, no matter the attacks that come are way - will eventually turn the SBC to more of a spirit of cooperation.

And, I am SBC - all the way. Unlike others, I am not seeking a position, nor have I lost one, therefore, I'm here to stay.

Blessings,

Wade

Jack Maddox said...

Jim

What about these resolutions troubles you the most? What is your thought on the resolution concerning Christian civility?

jrm

Anonymous said...

Jim Champion:

Don't give up, brother! Instead, get more involved.

The BGCT--and any state Baptist convention in the U.S.--only is one of several resources our congregations provide to themselves for carrying out the Great Commission. Despite our sentimental attachments to them--and all the hooey that is blogged about here or at other blogsites about them--state conventions are what they are: a resource.

Stay connected, be involved, help shape that resource into what it ought to be in order to serve your congregation while it's on mission for Christ in Texas and the world. Let's agree: pulling out and giving up are not options!

Anonymous said...

Jack

Not being a big fan of the BFM 2000 as it is, to now see the the SBTC is using that statement as a "minimum" is very disconcerting. To go beyond what scripture says regarding alcohol consumption is in my opinion a mistake. As I recall, the SBTC was not necessarily kind to Rev McKissick - and there have been many misstatements regarding the BGCT by the SBTC over the years - at the least calling them liberal. The SBTC has not hesitated much over the years to pile on the BGCT - and I will admit the sniping goes both ways. It will be interesting to read the Texan and see if they can live up to the Christian Civility resolution.

I dont see us leaving the BGCT - but the BGCT had better get its house in order - and not continue to offend those Texas Baptist churches who see ourselves as more conservative.

Jim Champion

greg.w.h said...

If the goal of the SBTC is to push those who disagree with it to abandoning what little investment they have left in the SBC, then I would read the resolutions as successful.

But their extremely cynical use of the term unity should be decried for precisely what it is.

Greg Harvey

Stephen Pruett said...

Scott, You wrote, "I consider myself to be a friend of Bart, Wes, Robin...and others with whom I do not hold 100% agreement on all points of doctrine, but we are together for the sake of the Gospel."

The problem is that if one of those points on which you don't agree happens to codified as prohibited as SBTC seems anxious to do, then you won't be
'together for the sake of the gospel". Some of you will be booted. That's what this is all about. Although some who post here don't like all of the B F & M 2000, I think Wade has stated he would be content if this was the standard. This isn't exactly CBF, etc. The truth is, those who want to codify in excelsis are more dangerous to the SBC than real conservatives who would keep the status quo.

Anonymous said...

Wade,
In your opinion, has the IMB staff been blessed and encouraged by you being a trustee?

In your opinion, has the body of trustees been blessed and encouraged by you being a trustee?

In your opinion, has the body of IMB missys been blessed and encouraged by you being a trustee?

Has the lost world been blessed, encouraged, and drawn to Christ by your actions and rhetoric as a trustee?

What have you contributed from your position as a trustee to the administrative/staff and missy functions?

What have you accompished as a trustee toward increasing the number of missys to the field?

In your quest to increase the tolerance umbrella in the SBC, have you advanced the cause of Christ?

You have aright to state your views and impress your points upon others--no matter the agenda--in love and patience, but I wonder if you have really accomplished anything for the Kingdom or possibly offended both brother/sisters in Christ and hindered others that do not know Christ?

Just a few thoughts.

Lin said...

"But this year, the newly "elected" president (who received his nomination speech by Dr. York) is Dr. Bill Hennard. He too is SBTS faculty, but don't worry, he's not on the IMB BoT...he's the chair of LifeWay's BoT. "

This seems like a conflict of interest to me. Should SBC entity employees (even if partime faculty or presidents) be allowed to be run for these positions? And if they are serving on an SBC entity board, shouldn't they resign if they win?

David said...

Jim Champion:

Not "its house"--OUR house, yours and mine! Your involvement in the BGCT is needed--in good AND bad times--to keep things squared-away and moving forward. Again: the BGCT--and the SBTC, and the BGCO, etc.--is a resource our churches provide to themselves via our CP dollars for advancing the gospel as local churches.

A guy doesn't throw out a rusty wrench--he shines it up with some WD-40 and keeps cranking, brother!

See this link--sign-up to help: http://www.bgct.org/survey/rws3.pl?FORM=CommitteeSuggestionForm_022307

Wade Burleson said...

Anonymous,

Identify yourself and I will be happy to answer what seem to be your rhetorical questions.

:)

Anonymous said...

lin,

It only gets better in KY. According to the Western Recorder's printed edition (this info is not online, but in print), this year's KBC Committee on Nominations, which appoints trustees to all the state entities as well as the "Mission Board" (which meets to discuss and recommend business to the convention the other 51 weeks per year) had some interesting leadership.

Wanna guess who the chair of that committee was??? None other than the same Hershael York. The committee was "vice-chaired" by Adam Greenway, who, if I am not mistaken, according to recent reports, was hired as faculty at SBTS as well. He is also a member of the BoT at LifeWay, as reported in the following article: http://www.towersonline.net/story.php?grp=news&id=460

What you won't find online but in the printed paper as well is that Pastor Chitwood's wife was appointed to a committee in KY as well (Credentials), as was also Dr. York's daughter-in-law (constitution and by-laws).

Please note a few things:

1. I have not said a disparaging thing about any of these individuals. I am sure they are all people of the highest character and outstanding Christians. That is not even at issue, and I have offered no slander or personal attack.

2. I have simply drawn attention to facts that are all in print, published openly, and simple to find with the most basic internet skills (i.e. I don't even know Dr. York's family, but in his own blog, he names his daughter-in-law...so this is really simple stuff). A simple copy of the Western Recorder (which I get even though not serving KY Baptists), the TowersOnline (SBTS newspaper) and google will lead one to all of these facts.

3. My complaint is not with the individuals, but it is with the simple fact that smaller and smaller cliques of individuals are holding all the power in the SBC today. From what I read, it is happening here in TX, KY, GA, FL, and other states.

This cannot be good news for Southern Baptists in the long haul. As I stated above, for a denomination w/ over 42,000 alleged churches, why does all of our leadership keep coming from the same 100 or so?

Apparently KY Baptists are not very interested anymore; the article about the convention found at westernrecorder.com reports that there were only 942 msgrs. prsent this year. This in a state with over 2,400 SB churches and A LOT of entities and historic ties to SB life. This is the first time the msgrs have dropped below 1000 since 1974. 2 years ago, there were over 1800. What does that tell you? Either people are suddenly not at all interested in SB life, or they figure that their attendance is fruitless since most decisions are a foregone conclusion now that a small group is in charge. This will continue to happen as the parameters and leadership pool narrow. More and more SB supporters will find the state and national convention to be increasingly irrelevant and they will simply walk away. I am not saying that because I want it to happen, I don't. I am saying it because it is already happening, and the CR establishment doesn't seem to either take notice or care; they just keep on rearranging the chairs on the deck of the Titanic as they have done for over 20 years. Sad indeed.

BTW Wade, as per "Kingdom expansion" and the comment above, I pray that you will continue to advance the Kingdom of God by standing up for truth and light. I long for the days when the secret politics, dirty tactics, and power-struggles are over, but it will not happen until a generation of leaders stands up and attempts to give the convention back to the people and churches to whom it rightly belongs. Clearly, that ownership is under attack by a small group of individuals who seek to advance their own agendas, but I pray that 42,000 churches will send messengers to Indy next year and say "enough is enough"!

davidinflorida said...

Wade,

Sometimes I wonder why you would remain in the SBC. I`ve heard of other pastors that have left for less.

You say "I am SBC - all the way". What does that mean today? Maybe the SBC that you have known and loved has left you. It appears that alot of the leadership has, and they are in total control. Almost anything you say, that questions them, is deemed as mean spirited and wrong.

I realize that the Burleson name has been there from the start, and that is my point. Obviously that start was the end of something else.

What would Rufus do?....... He too had his detractors, but in the end, he overcame.

Is this the same SBC that Rufus knew, or has it changed into something else?

The other Jack said...

"Anonymous/Jim S" wrote:

"yjekso" was as error disregard.


-Thanks for clearing that up; for a moment there I thought you were posting in tongues! :)

shadrach said...

Wow, this is a hot one, but I feel there is something left out of these discussions.

What is the point of drinking alcohol? Is it to win the lost? Is it to glorify God? Is it to bring you closer to Jesus?

I would submit that the consumption of alcohol is simply an unneccesary exercise of personal freedom. It is true that you are free, but not all things are beneficial. And if your exercise of freedom causes one of these little ones to stumble, well, we know what's going to happen to you.

So, to the larger point: Is it better to mandate extra-Biblical, good teaching or to champion personal freedom?

I think I know which way Paul, yes the Paul who told Timothy to drink a little for his stomach, would go on this one.

G. Alford said...

Nothing… absolutely Nothing… coming out of these guys surprises me anymore. I am so disgusted by the conduct and the policies of many of the SBC leadership that I am completely disillusioned with the whole SBC.

More and more I find myself being ashamed of my fellow Southern Baptist, my Convention, and my Heritage.

My only consolation is that we do not live in the days of Knox or they would be burning fellow Baptist for their opinions and not just banning them from service.

Grace to all,

Jack said...

Shadrack asked:

"What is the point of drinking alcohol? Is it to win the lost? Is it to glorify God? Is it to bring you closer to Jesus?

I would submit that the consumption of alcohol is simply an unneccesary exercise of personal freedom.

So, to the larger point: Is it better to mandate extra-Biblical, good teaching or to champion personal freedom?"


I respect those who choose not to drink. I understand the logic in encouraging others not to do so.

However, we follow the teachings of the Son of God who turned water into wine as his first miracle and served wine as a sacrament at the last supper.

Scripture teaches that wine is a gift from God; that its abuse has consequences; that drunkenness is a sin; and that we should avoid offending or judging others.

If I "am not given to much wine" (abusing alcohol to the point of drunkenness) scripture teaches that I am eligible to serve as a church leader.

If I drink wine, but am not a drunkard -- and choose not to drink around those who might be offended - on what scriptural basis would you deny me to serve Christ within your Convention, Association, Boards, Mission Agencies etc?

And, yes, in some settings that I can think of (Pubs, Wine-producing Regions, European Cultures) I do think that a glass of wine could be useful to allow you to engage the culture where they are to teach the Gospel.

I know some within the SBC reject this because they feel it "damages our witness" but that did not seem to be a concern of Christ who was accused of associating with thieves and drunkards during his ministry.

My prayer, Shadrack, is that believers like you and I can find ways to set aside our cultural differences and work together in order to fulfill The Great Commission.

Blessings,

-jack-

Tim said...

I am so happy that I'm a part of the BGCT.

Tim Dahl

shadrach said...

jack,

As a worker in Niger, a culture with some similarites to ancient Isreal, let me expand just a little on Christ's first miracle. Why was he there? It was probably a friend of the family and at that time, wine was a main drink of the day. In the ceremony, if the wine ran out, the whole thing could be called off and the family would be publicly disgraced. It is still this way in Niger, but we use dates and kola nuts since grapes do not grow here.

Jesus was saving face for a family friend and allowing a marriage to go on by showing grace to the host who did not properly prepare. Isn't it odd how He still does that same thing for us today?

Also, having spent time in a number of countries where it is acceptable and normal to drink, I can tell you that you are much more salt and light if you abstain than if you excercise that personal freedom to fit in with the culture. If you really just want to go to a pub, I don't know of any that don't offer non-alcoholic beverages.

As far as wine being a gift from God, the first instance we see of wine in the Bible is with Noah after the flood and the immediate consequence of its use was the damnation of a third of the world's people (the offspring of Ham).

I know we can cooperate, because we have a common goal-to see the nations won for Christ. The difference is that we seek out God's best; you seek out God's permission. As with divorce, Jesus taught in accord with his culture and he said, Moses 'wrote you this precept because of your hardness of heart, but it was not always so.'

David said...

Tim:

That makes 2.5 million of us (on a good day; some not always happy)!

Jack Maddox said...

shadrach

Well said and AMEN!

jrm

The Other Jack said...

Shadrack:

Interesting that it was the wine that caused Noah to sin and not Noah. Apply the same logic to the garden and Adam & Eve are off the hook..right? “It was that fruit you gave me!”

While we graciously agree to disagree let's tackle the bigger issue:

You say "I know we can cooperate, because we have a common goal-to see the nations won for Christ."

-So, if I wish to plant a church in Napa Valley; engage non-churchgoers in UK pubs; or plant a church in Tuscany you would not exclude me from service (receiving CP funds) on the grounds that I state during the interview process that in accordance with biblical teaching I drink an occasional glass of wine but not in excess or to the point of drunkenness?

-The "other" Jack

To JRM:

Shalom aleichem, Brother!

James said...

[Wade said:] If entities were to follow the SBCT Resolution instead of the Garner Motion and the understanding of the SBC Executive Committee, there would be all kinds of doctrinal policies implemented that exceed the BFM 2000.

Wade,

I've read and re-read the resolution just as you have iterated it and I just see how what you say is so...

I'll REiterate now:

"The Baptist Faith and Message is neither a creed, nor a complete statement of our faith, nor final and infallible; nevertheless, we further acknowledge that it [the BFM200] is the only consensus statement of doctrinal beliefs approved by the Southern Baptist Convention and such is SUFFICIENT in its current form to guide trustees in their establishment of policies and practices of entities of the Convention."

The money clause (in bold) sounds like exactly what you have been calling for. The introductory clause strikes me as self-evident, and it does not take back anything from the main clause.

"Sufficient" means nothing else is added. It doesn't expressly prohibit the trustees from taking any step beyond the BFM2000 but that is the obvious intent. Trustees acting with integrity will have no problem working within its limits without constraint. But to go further in the resolution might risk tying trustee's hands to act as executives even to enforce the BFM2000 itself, and lead to its errosion in practice.

greg.w.h said...

It's funny that Jesus not only turned water into wine and added an ordinance that uses red wine to symbolize his blood, but that he also chastened the religious leaders for trying to improve on God's Law and in the process burdening the "people".

I see no evidence that Jesus came to institute a new form of legalism. I see plenty of evidence that his intent was the opposite of that.

Note, especially, that Jesus wasn't particularly bothered by being called a wine bibber.

I'll close with this observation: what can possibly be good in a rule that excludes people like Jesus and the apostles from serving?

Greg Harvey

The "other" Jack said...

Thanks, Greg.

Although I agree with you, I suspect that many who hold traditional "Southern Baptist Distinctives" to be near and dear will find wine -- even in a cup held by our Lord and Savior --to be a stumbling block.

-So, Shadrack & MeJack :)... let's forget my scriptural arguments about wine.

I agree to abide by what I believe are extra-biblical prohibitions about alcohol consumption during the missionary candidate's interview -- but as you move from my now padlocked wine cellar to my prayer closet-- I confess, that when I am alone with God I speak to him in a private prayer language.

I cite scripture about speaking mysteries to God, Pentecost, as well as an Apostolic commandment to forbid not speaking in tongues.

-Should I still be banned from cooperatively-funded missionary service with The Southern Baptist Convention? -If so, why?

Bill said...

Shadrach: You seek God's best, only if you can prove that God's "best" is total abstention. I don't see any reading of scripture that supports it. Unless you think that Jesus and the apostles and well, every culture in the history of mankind until the period of American prohibition never sought God's best. Is celibacy God's "best" and engaging in allowed sexual relations merely God's permission?

Rex Ray said...

Jack Maddox,
Your eighth (17 November 12:09) of fourteen comments made me smile. You told Wade, “One Poster even calls by name Brothers in Christ and insults them when he himself is not a member of a church that is a part of the SBTC.”

Here we go again…same old thing. At 09:72, I had quoted what Jim Richards said, and you said he was insulted.

On June 4, 2007, 09:33, I quoted what Jim Richards said, and at 02:51, you said, “I challenge you to find one time he has spoken with the degree of shrillness and un-Christ like rhetoric that you have shown him.”

I replied to your challenge: (08:58), “Looks to me like you are condemning his words to be shrillness and un-Christ like rhetoric.”

You never replied, but now you are complaining to Wade about his words being quoted were insults.

Wade replied, “Jack, not insults, just dialogue. Insults come when you imply Southern Baptists who are not like you are Methodists and then seek to exclude them from the SBC missionary and ministry participation.”

You told how your convention does not allow criticism of the BGCT that you split from.

Have you repented of all the false charges (denies deity of Christ, virgin birth, promotes child pornography etc.) your Plumbline Newspaper made?

If so, why have two sister conventions? Why not rejoin the old one like we used to be, and we can worship together and carry out the Great Commission together?

Jack Maddox said...

Rex

I owned the Plumbline?

wow...go figure

blessings rex...and good night : )

jrm

GeneMBridges said...

"churches, denominations, and conventions have compromised their doctrinal distinctives in modern days in an ecumenical attempt to include people by excluding sound doctrinal principles"

What bothers me most of all about this statement is that the term "ecumenical' seems to be quite elastic. Whereas many of us might consider this to be, something like "friendship/cooperation with those who might not otherwise be able to offer a credible profession of faith," (for example, Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, and others who cannot do so) this, in the hands of some in the SBC of late, seems to be "anybody who is not a credobaptist." But that's not enough, it turns into "and does not affirm x" (x = any doctrine and/or practice of choice). It is one thing to use it in the former fashion, but the latter two are problematic. I've seen some Baptists say that Roman Catholics and the Orthodox can offer a credible profession of faith (because they seem to think justification by faith alone and/or substiutionary atonement are *just* theories of the atonement), but then I've seen others go so far to denounce Calvinism by trying to tar it with Presbyterianism. Both are equally wrong for the same reason: they fail to draw distinctions between kinds and levels of error.

Also, the word "ecumenical" seems to be used as a scare term, like the term "liberal" in politics. If you want to win an election here in my part of NC, for example, all you have to do is say you are the "true" conservative. This only contributes to the dumbing down of society as a whole, much less the covenant community.


I say we accept the BFM 2000 as the doctrinal standard of our cooperation.


That, however, will not be enough, Wade. At this point, there is no agreement about scrupling, and that I think is the real issue here. Of course, there is a historic precedent within American Presbyterian history for dealing with this. The SBC needs to negotiate its own parallel to the Adopting Act of 1729 AND when it does it needs to be made clear that churches that do not affirm it will not be seated at a Convention afterwards. Yes, state conventions are autonomous, but so is the national convention, and no church, however conservative or liberal should have its messengers seated at a convention if they are going to behave in the frankly juvenile manner some have in recent months and weeks. If an Adopting Act is negotiated, it should have teeth. Yes, you can give your money, but you will not be seated and none of your members will be considered for any trusteeship - period, effective immediately, and if that means that those who feel otherwise are currently sitting, as draconian as it sounds, they should be removed. Start every board at the same time with a clean slate. Yes, I said, it, reboot the boards.

That said, this will never happen. Of course, this might be called "ecumenical" by some, because of borrowing from non-Baptist tradition. However, I'd point out that from the moment the First London Confession was drafted (quoting from the True Confession) as well as the Second London Confession, Baptists have been doing just that. We could learn a few things from other groups, but some Baptists are way too hung up on navel gazing themselves to do that...

Rex Ray said...

Good morning Jack,
My apologies for giving you ‘wiggle’ room in denying you’re not the owner of the Plumbline.

I should have said your convention owns the Plumbline, but then, you’re not the owner of the convention either; are you?

My congratulations on your ability to dodge hard questions. I hope you didn’t loose sleep in thinking of an answer.

Last night, a SBTC church and a BGCT church worshiped in a Methodist church in giving praises to our Lord

The pastor gave us a wonder sermon how in the middle of bad times (Civil War) Lincoln declared a national holiday to thank the Lord just as Jesus thanked his Father at his last supper.

And on top of that, the pastor was a woman!

What is this world coming to? Maybe it’s time to bury our petty differences and unite to win souls.

I tried new toothpaste yesterday, and all through Sunday school, I felt a zesty fresh taste. When I got home I checked the brand, and it said, “Anti-Itch Cream.”

Since that worked, maybe we have a chance.

shadrach said...

Wow, rex. I'll leave that at that.

Jack, we can work together and should. Right now, the BoT that YOU elected would (probably) not allwo you to serve is you do have a private prayer language and I would be very careful in discipling new believers with you becasue you teach the freedom to drink over the command not to cause others to stumble.

Noone is calling Jesus a sinner for drinking, but at that time, drinking was a part of the passover ceremony (which Jesus did not abolish) and wine was a normal drink mostly for health reasons. I'll bring you some Niger water and I'd expectyou to take wine over it any day.

The issue today is that wine is not neccessary for health and alcohol is linked to numerous social problems that make the church (if it drinks) appear to be a part of the problem rather than the solution.

The issue is not about whether or not you get drunk. If you want to use the example of prostitutes, Jesus allowed them to come to him seeking forgiveness and instruction. Jesus did not dress up as a prostitue and go stand on the street corner.

What you are doing is saying it is my right to dress up and go stand on the street corner, but I won't engage in promiscuous sexual activity. We are to avoid ALL apearance of evil.

Didn't I see that in the BF&M? :)

That is what I mean by seeking God's best and not his permission.

Bill said...

People drank alcohol in biblical times for the same reason they drink it now. Because they liked it. You just can't get around that. They considered it one of God's blessings because He said it was. When did that change? People make it sound like they reluctantly drank wine because of the bad water but you simply can't take that from Scripture. If the water was deadly then Samuel, Samson, John the Baptist, and the rest of the Nazirites didn't seem to know about it.

I challenge you to name one thing considered a blessing in Scripture that cannot be and has never been overdone or misused.

Alcohol can indeed lead someone to stumble. So can legalism.

Jack Maddox said...

Rex

The SBTC does not OWN "the Plumbline" They never did. The Plumbline has not been in publication for a very long time. Join us in the 21st century Rex, its not a bad place. Quit living in the past. QUit acting like you know me, you dont. I will respond to you when you have something of substance to respond to. Until then, I will not. Sorry to be so harsh but your bitter attitude towards all the is SBC has made me somewhat weary. Have a great day.

jrm

ps - be more careful with your toothpase brother...that was just a weird analogy

Lin said...

"People drank alcohol in biblical times for the same reason they drink it now."

I thought they drank it because it was safer than many other options at the time.

What would be the point of needing new wineskins?

Jack said...

Shadrack wrote:

"Right now, the BoT that YOU elected would (probably) not allow you to serve as you do have a private prayer language and I would be very careful in discipling new believers with you because you teach the freedom to drink over the command not to cause others to stumble."

OK, then. I present for missionary candidacy another faithful member of my SBC church.

He accepted Jesus at a Church of Christ youth camp and was baptized by his camp counselor (a farmer with no theological degree).

Unlike me, he harbors no beliefs that anyone would call charismatic and - because he grew up in The Church of Christ- believes in total abstinence from alcoholic beverages.

He has been an active member of an SBC church for many years now and feels a calling for the mission field. -Would you deny him appointment as a missionary funded by SBC cooperative program dollars?nae

pewsitter said...

I'm confused. If elected officials and trustees of a conference vow to abstain (fast?) from alcohol, is that bad? Why is that shunning or legalism?

Bible Study Fellowship asks its leaders to abstain from alcohol during their term. You sign a written vow. I balked. But after seeing others willingly make the same quiet sacrifice out of love for the women (some elderly, some suffering with alcoholic spouses or parents) and children, I did it too.

Scripture says let your yes be yes so we didn't drink even at home or on vacation. We didn't keep track, or care if nonleaders chose to drink. It was a personal vow, but also communal between leaders.

It wasn't a Big Deal b/c no one made it a Big Deal.

shadrach said...

Jack,

You will find me much more moderate on the issue of baptism and I am by no means a landmarkist. Just in respect to your previous post, I also have no problems with people who practice the gift of tongues (even in church) as long as they do so according to Biblical instruction. I am not a cessationist.

Here are my concerns: First we hold to all Biblical truth and teach it accordingly. Secondly, we are aware of our culture and avoid the appearance of evil while building scriptural bridges. Finally, we cooperate with everyone who holds to those first two in our goal of seeing the entire world brought to saving faith in Jesus Christ.

I think that makes it pretty do-able for most of us to work together. I recently learned it is not at all about my opinions, but it's all about holding entierly to the truth of God's Word. I try not to go too legalistic on this stuff, but none of your reasons for drinking outweigh the Biblical reasons for not. So, that's that in my mind.

I wish it hadn't taken seeing many of my ministerial friends spiral into the hole of a moral void to realize what placing the importance on personal freedom instead of God's righteousness does.

Bill said...

Exercising personal freedom in Christ is not an alternative choice to Christ's righteousness. They are not incompatible. It is a false dichotomy and circular reasoning. Abstain from the appearance of evil presupposes that drinking looks evil. Jesus didn't think so.

I would love to see the statistics of alcohol abuse by the children of abstainers vs moderate partakers. I think we would be very surprised at the results.

Since I don't know anyone personally on this board I think I can say this without pointing fingers. I think anyone more than 25 lbs overweight should refrain from voicing their alcohol abstentionist viewpoints. People are always threatening to bring a gluttony resolution to the floor of the convention and I'd like to see it happen. (I don't drink but I have been known to eat like a pig)

shadrach said...

I know this is going to die soon so I may just be beating a dead horse, but my main question is: Wat good has drinking brought to our society?

I'm sorry if it sounds like I am attacking those of you who choose to drink. That is your choice. I just happen to have very strong views about Chritians being the ones who should be reforming society. As with salvation, recognizing sin comes before personal freedom. Here is what I'm getting at, not that drinking itself is a sin, but that in the proccess of transformation our society needs to purge itself first and can then be rebuilt in the image of Christ. They tried doing that during the prohibition and it didn't work. The change has to come from the inside, not be imposed. That's why I thik the church needs to be very careful in its promotion of alcohol. We are the ones chosen to enact change. We must be blameless to accomplish this and that is why I am so keen on avioding all appearance of evil in TODAY'S culture. We are not in ancient Israel.

Batchaps said...

FOR JRM
I did work for Dr. Richards and served on the some initial committees for the SBTC (1997-2000). I can share some stories that would perhaps cast a very negative light on some of the SBTC leaders and how things are REALLY decided in the SBTC, i.e. "Cronyism." However, instead of slinging mud and pointing fingers, I decided to move on and serve God and let the SBTC do their own thing. Remember this my friend: Satan can appear as an angel of light.

Grace to you,

Russ+

Rex Ray said...

Jack Maddox or JRM,
Wow! Looks like someone else is living in the past.
What do you think Russell meant by “Satan can appear as an angle of light”?

Glad he wasn’t talking to me.

I’m also glad you told me the Plumbline is out of business. You didn’t deny that its garbage was used to persuade churches to leave the BGCT.

Of course you don’t want to talk about the past since the SBTC has turned over a new leaf.

Sorry I couldn’t say anything you considered as substance. I’ll try harder next time.

Anonymous said...

The issue to me cannot stem from any law found in Scripture, but rather from the application of wisdom in a person’s life…dependent upon that person’s culture, or situation, or personal convictions. In other words, I cannot find Scripture’s prohibition of alcoholic beverage, however, through the application of wisdom I may determine that it is best for me to abstain. I cannot use the “avoid all appearances of evil” argument; because many times Jesus did not avoid all appearances of evil… in fact he was accused of being a drunkard, as were the disciples at Pentecost. The church MUST begin to depend upon the Holy Spirit to sanctify a person, not another set of laws we create based upon ‘our’ wisdom.

Robert

pewsitter said...

I still see it as leaders acting after the pattern of deacons, simply removing a potential issue (alcohol) from the table altogether.

I'm guessing these guys don't smoke, wager or buy lottery tickets, either (not perfect analogies, I know!).

Karen in OK said...

Will there be lots of individual Catholics and Church of Christ adherents in Heaven? I believe so.
They will be saved in spite of their theological systems rife with error. Because ultimately they trusted in Christ and Him Alone.
And there will be many Baptists in Hell who had correct doctrine.

But I sure find it troublesome that some comments here are saying that baptism as the Church of Christ customarily defines it is only a trivial difference. How legalistic of us Baptists to say that believing such doctrine is at the very least wrong and misstates the Gospel! Count me as legalistic then!

Karen in OK said...

It looks like I posted this under the current thread instead of the earlier one where it was more pertinent.

Bob Cleveland said...

Anonymous Robert,

The real rub comes in when people apply their wisdom to some OTHER person's life. I rarely see believers lamenting their own position, as respects themselves.

Bob Cleveland said...

WRT the alcohol in biblical times; we go outside the bible to reinforce our already-decided positions on alcohol (and tons of other matters, too) rather than simply relying on what the bible says. I think the bible says enough.

I've heard people pontificate that wine wasn't really potent enough to get all that drunk, yet folks were EXPECTED to get smashed enough at wedding feasts not to know the difference between the good stuff and el cheapness. Yet Jesus went anyway, and even made them some more when they ran out.

As for wine being the only safe drink, I don't see that in the bible and darned if I'm looking to science or archeology to bolster my view of scripture.

But that's just me.

:)

Anonymous said...

Bob,
We come full circle to the real issue...sola scriptura, or not. I had a professor in seminary who opened my eyes to the real meaning of what "inspired text" means, which is that history isn't inspired, neither is archeology, it is the words of the bible that are God-breathed. It sure made doing exigesis easy because before, I'd have 1/2 a paper devoted to historical/cultural background. Understanding that God has given us the inspired text makes for a refreshing study, because you really only have to study the text.

Robert

Batchaps said...

I wonder what the Ante-Nicene Fathers would think about sola scriptura since all of scriptura had not been written nor decided upon by Church for the first 400 years...

Russ+

Rex Ray said...

Correct me if I’m wrong but the Church at Antioch did not add Revelations to the Bible for 800 years.