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

Paige Patterson's Apology to the 'People He's Hurt'

The Southwestern Seminary report was given today at the Southern Baptist Convention. You may watch the final 18 minutes of it here.  Some have requested to know how I felt about Dr. Patterson's remarks. Here are few thoughts.

(1). After the report Danny Akin said from the platform, "Dr. Patterson does not have to apologize to me for his heart for the lost." I am sure Dr. Akin is a bright and intelligent human being, but how in the world someone would think 'an apology' was being given for having 'a heart for the lost' is beyond my comprehension -- particularly an apology given to the Southern Baptist Convention for having a heart for the lost.  Why would anyone 'apologize' for that?  Dr. Akin, we don't need leaders in the Convention using sycophantic language that makes no sense.  We need men who clearly articulate the principles of grace and truth. Give us some truth Danny. We see through flattery.

(2). The Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Southwestern Seminary made it clear that the trustees would address the issue in September. Good for him. He also said, "Don't talk to others about this, talk to God." Not so good for him. Until people talked to others about this issue (including trustees), nothing was being said or done. You are only as sick as the secrets you keep.

(3). Dr. Patterson looked like he was under stress. His voice faltered. He teared up a few times. He looked rattled.  Honestly, my heart went out to him. But then I thought about "Pinky" Klouda, Dr. Sheri Klouda's husband, whose heart was literally failing when Dr. Klouda was being terminated from SWBTS for being a woman teaching Hebrew to men, and my compassion for Dr. Patterson tempered. I thought about Dr. Cornish and the rescission of his contract because his wife had been divorced from an abusive husband when she was just nineteen, long before she ever met Dr. Cornish.  I thought about Dr. Mitchell and what I know about his termination. I am hopeful that 'love for evangelical Christians' reaches the same level as the 'love for the lost' that was expressed from the platform today. Why do we treat believers in Allah better than we do believers in Jesus Christ?

(4).  My old friend, Malcolm Yarnell, found a little anecdote about Dr. Rufus Burleson breaking the rules and admitting an atheist at Baylor University. Good for him. I believe people are always more important than rules. It's interesting that the people who live by the sword, ultimately die by the sword. You fight fire with fire. We need some grace in the Convention for Christians who disagree with others over tertiary doctrinal matters, and  maybe a taste of one's own medicine this spring caused a realization that love for people is far more important than your precious principles that a woman shouldn't teach a man, or a faculty member's wife should never be divorced, or an administrator that has a mouse pad with a saying you don't like... well, you get the picture.

(5). I am praying for Dr. and Mrs. Patterson. I am not just saying those words. I just finished praying for them.   I trust that the lessons learned will be applied in the future when its time to be gracious to those Southern Baptists and other evangelicals who disagree on tertiary issues of the Christian faith. That's the lesson of this Convention.

83 comments:

raswhiting said...

Re: Dr. Akin's comment supporting or excusing Patterson.
So now one wonders if there are Muslims or other unbelievers admitted into SEBTS?

Anonymous said...

Thanks Wade, I appreciate your response. It was considerably more tempered than I expected. I was there today. Actually hoped I would run into you and introduce myself, but alas.

In the end, I felt like the whole report was a well-planned charade and I'm disappointed that messengers ate it up so gullibly. I guess if you show a measure of humility and a few tears, it's easy to convince people of anything. What I lament is the fact that, if one listens closely, they will hear that NOT ONCE was there an apology for the wrong-doing, rule-breaking or intimidation of others into silence. What he actually apologized for was creating a controversy that distracted everyone from an otherwise spectacular meeting. In other words, if the truth hadn't come out and there hadn't been this "black cloud" hanging over the meeting about this issue, then there would be no need for this apology because he still does not see what he did as a problem.

At the end of the day, He won. The twitter-universe immediately lit up with sycophants praising Paige for his humility, in essence asking how anyone could DARE to question any actions by a man so humble and with such a heart for evangelism. I do not question Dr. Patterson's heart, nor do I question his sincerity today, nor would I EVER question his love for the lost or for Christ. This issue was never about any of those things. It was about a flawed leader who leads one of our institutions with a tyrannical style whereby he hires and fires at random without accountability, spends money lavishly, sets his own rules and ignores those set forth by the convention and NO-ONE will call him on it. I am not optimistic that the trustees will do much about this. After all, they have framed the issue in such a way now that to bring it up is "sinful" and divisive. I'm confused as to exactly what course the average SB is supposed to follow anymore when they see an abuse of power?! The Scriptures exhort us to confront the individual and seek to bring the truth to light, but now we're told that we merely need to stop talking and "talk to God" about it.

I'm confused, disappointed, and more than a little disillusioned with the current course of the SBC. And I haven't even commented yet on the other issues from this week.

Thanks again for your willingness to stand up for what's right. I don't always agree with everything you say, but I know you're a man of integrity who cares about people AND truth.

Concerned in the Heartland.

Christiane said...

I wrote a comment over on Voices (I'm in 'moderation' and it likely won't get into publication) and I would like to share my comment here:



'Christiane June 11, 2014 at 10:01 pm

Your comment is awaiting moderation.



"a question

if by conscience, Dr. Patterson admitted the Muslim student against the seminary’s policy, I can understand him doing that;

but then, I would think that the best way to make things right again would be at least to OFFER his resignation to the governing board of SWBTS on ethical grounds, as he has openly admitted breaking the agreed upon policy of the school.

This satisfies both:

his private conscience as a Christian before God
and
his commitment to serving the seminary in good faith


In all likelihood, I realize that SWBTS would not accept his resignation,
but the act of offering it sincerely would have satisfied a justice so that future presidents of the institution would know that there was SOME responsible and ethical behavior required of a president if he did take it upon himself to break rules . . .

this would be a ‘control’ of sorts rather than setting a precedent that it is ‘okay’ to say your sorry, as long as you say you did it for the sake of conscience before God, and that should be response enough for your action.

some thoughts . . ."

Reply


115 Christiane June 11, 2014 at 10:03 pm

Your comment is awaiting moderation.


"and my question was:
Would the ethical thing to do be for Dr. Patterson to at least OFFER to resign in light of his choosing to break school policy ?"

Reply

- See more at: http://sbcvoices.com/motions-introduced/#sthash.Pd2S6mUw.dpuf'

Anonymous said...

Anon 8:38,

You are not alone in your concerns. One must wonder if the two questions were planted so that 1) PP was always in control of the conversion, and 2) the questioning did not get heated.

If the above is true, it's a sad day in the SBC. And if not, it's still a sad day in the SBC.

I sincerely hope the student(s?) in question repent. And may God help us all.

Anonymous said...

*conversation

Jonathan McGuire said...

Here's a slightly different take, from a layman's perspective:

President Obama stated that he has a pen and he has a phone. He meant that if he deems something to be of great importance, he is going to make it happen even if he has to violate the constitutional restrictions on his power.

President Patterson is making essentially the same argument. Rather than seeking to lead the trustees of his institution to change the admission rules to accommodate his desire, he acted as though the rules don't apply to him.

I understand and applaud his evangelistic zeal. But I do not applaud the use of that zeal as a cover to justify his acting as though the rules do not apply to him.

Where does this end? Do we really want to argue that as long as we're acting for the sake of the Gospel, we're free to violate clear rules?

GenXers and Millennials have spent/will spend our entire adult lives in a culture that has long ago rejected the concept of absolutes. We are familiar with a leadership culture that places a great emphasis on protecting the leader and securing the office to that leader than on the truths that provide the foundation of the office.

What you didn't hear among the applause for Dr. Patterson today was the collective shrug by the two youngest adult generations. This is a shrug that states, "why should a seminary president be different than the US president?"

Debbie Kaufman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
danielmharding.com said...

There is a scene in God and Generals that I believe fits what transpired today. General Jackson and his slave have stopped at Chancellor's Crossing and the slave prays that God would open the eyes and hearts of those that enslave his people. Following the prayer of the slave Jackson also prays that God would give them wisdom in what to do. Ignoring what could be historical inaccuracies, it is clear that the filmaker is showing the passion of the slave's prayer against the seeming absurdity of Jackon's prayer.

Headless Unicorn Guy said...

Why do we treat believers in Allah better than we do believers in Jesus Christ?

Because the Faithful of Al'lah are very much into Public Morality (and the enforcement of same) and That's What's Truly Important?

I don't think SBC are Calvinist, so the overemphasis on God's Omnipotent Will and Predestination (In'shal'lah...) might not carry over.

Anonymous said...

Ditto for Wade's take and for the first Anonymous 08:38:00 statement!

1. Dr Akin said, "Dr. Patterson does not have to apologize to me for his heart for the lost." So is this now going to be used for other presidents to allow Mormons, Muslims, JWs, etc. to be admitted and trained?

2. Patterson didn't say he would refrain from doing it again did he?

3. Could Patterson be open about how much this Muslim man is being given through CP money, jobs, scholarships, books etc. ?

4. Was there any discussion on the book of reports from SWBTS?

Anonymous said...

Wade, you can delete by previous post above... i have clarified it a bit.


Ditto for Wade's take and for the first Anonymous 08:38:00 statement!

Patterson said, this has been the greatest convention we ever had. In light of that I come with an apology. I have caused sorry etc. I deeply apologize. I apologize to my family, faculty and trustees for my decision.

But then his whole standing before the judgment story was ridiculous. Patterson said that he admitted an atheist, a Syrian Orthodox priest and what will God say to Rufus Burelson because he admitted an Atheist to Baylor? What will I say to God? God—I had a heart for lost, I violated a policy—I did the best I knew how. **(Listen folks in the convention—let me tell you a ridiculous judgment story so you can see how ridiculous it is for anyone to question me on [ tears ] [tears] my decision).

Questions:

1. Does Patterson believe other presidents should be able to allow a non-Christian open homosexual, Mormon, JW or Atheist for the sake of evangelism?

2. Dr Akin said, "Dr. Patterson does not have to apologize to me for his heart for the lost." So is this now going to be used for other presidents to allow Mormons, Muslims, JWs, etc. to be admitted and trained?

3. Patterson didn't say he would refrain from doing it again did he? (not by his judgment story at the end)

4. Could Patterson be open about how much this Muslim man is being given through CP money, jobs, scholarships, books etc. ?

ScottShaver said...

Crocodile tears?

Discarded lives, careers, and ministries scattered across the SBC landscape like broken potsherds.

God give us the strength to demonstrate the kind of grace not shown to others.

Wyman said...

My take on all of this

http://www.walkingtogetherministries.com/2014/06/12/concluding-thoughtsquestions-on-the-situation-at-southwestern-seminary/

Anonymous said...

Dear Pastor Wade,

Thank you do much for your courageous stand on this issue and bringing the concerns of students to light. You have done a great service to the SBC.

Christiane said...




"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean -- neither more nor less."

"The question is," said Alice, "whether you can make words mean so many different things."

"The question is," said Humpty Dumpty, "which is to be master - - that's all."

(Through the Looking Glass, Chapter 6)

Jon L. Estes said...

WADE: "Dr. Akin, we don't need sycophants in Convention leadership saying things that make no sense. We need men who clearly articulate the principles of grace and truth. Give us some truth Danny. We see through flattery."

JLE: I am glad you only deal with the issues and never make it personal or make personal attacks towards another.

This comment shows you know little about Dr. Akin. Maybe I am wrong. You could demonstrate to us what you know and support your accusation. Tell me why you think Dr. Akin needs to act obsequiously toward Dr.Patterson in order to gain an advantage (sycophant defined for the purpose of the question)?

Anonymous said...

The bottom line is that Patterson totally won the PR battle and now anyone who criticizes him will be shunned and scorned. Paige is smarter than people give him credit for and he just proved it to the whole SBC with just a few well placed tears and some flowery words. Kind of sad isn't it?

Debbie Kaufman said...

Jon: I think the post answers your question. I swear Jon I could say the sky is blue and out of opposition you would say it was green and for me to prove it is blue.

I wrote and deleted comments because I was so angry when I wrote them, I had to take time to let that anger kindle to a simmer. I'm still angry at Paige's speech. It was so Paige Patterson. Get in trouble, do something wrong, start it with some tears, then end it with God is on my side and I have no blood on my hands. I would disagree.

Sheri Klouda, Dwight McKissic(sorry dwight, I know you have forgiven, Possibly I should follow suit. I can't.), those who came to him as victims of Darrel Gilyard to be met with a cold answer and dismissal of them as not telling the truth, those he has fired for divorce, the advice he gave for a woman who was being hit by her husband to stay there and pray for him, be a better wife. No, Paige has blood on his hands, and the sad part is it is from those who are Christians and Southern Baptists.

RRR said...

This is why it all seemed quite staged and insincere to me: I think there were two questions directed to Brother Paige from the floor of the Convention regarding his SWBTS Report. The first was a gentleman asking why SWBTS gives seminary training to non-Christians (atheists, Muslims, etc.) in the SWBTS "prison ministry" where they apparently offer seminary courses to inmates. At the first of his response to that question, I believe that Brother Paige said the man presenting that question was his brother in-law. Regardless, this question gave Brother Paige the opening to explain how SWBTS is justified in providing seminary teaching in prison to professing non-believers because the prison is a secular institution. Therefore, SWBTS is not allowed to provide seminary education in prison without offering it to ALL inmates regardless of their religious affiliation. In the process of providing this ministry they have rejoiced in seeing some inmates come to Christ.

Only then did the second question come from the floor asking Brother Paige why he had allowed a Muslim to register and attend SWBTS "on campus". Does anyone else see where this is going?

The first question regarding SWBTS’s including non-believers in their prison seminary program seemed to muddy the water by comparing apples and oranges; i.e., justifying the offering of seminary courses to non-believers in a secular prison environment where SWBTS has limited administrative control compared to offering it to non-believers on a seminary campus work where the administration and application of policies is totally under the control of SWBTS. The entire sequence of questions to Brother Paige appeared to me to be a very astute political maneuver and well planned in advance thereby undermining any sense of sincerity (to my thinking at least) regarding subsequent statements.

Then came the "apology". I was at first hopeful for witnessing a redemptive heart at work but soon dismayed by what appeared to me to again be a very well rehearsed and planned stage event. I know, I know, I am not able to judge a brother's heart, but God gave us all a brain and hopefully a sense of discernment to guard us from deception and having misled trust. I never heard Brother Paige offer an admission of having done a "wrong". All I heard was a spoken regret saying that if what he did hurt your feelings he was sorry about that, but…. Never a word of apology that "I did wrong and I’m not going to do that again."

Then he expounded (humbly?) to say that even if there was anything done that was in error in some people's mind it was justified by it all having been done to win people to Christ. The end justifies the means sort of thing.

Brother Paige addressed any accusations about his misusing Cooperative Program dollars by saying that no CP dollars were used to finance the Muslim’s tuition but it was done through private grants. What about the facilities where he lives?/The professors salaries who teach him?/The payment of the electric and water bill on campus? THOSE are paid with Cooperative Program dollars in support of all students.

But apparently, as demonstrated by what appeared to be (I was not in attendance but watching on-line) an overwhelming standing ovation following Brother Paige’s explanation, I must be in the minority with my impression of it all. Given that most of us do have the presence of the same Holy Spirit, maybe I better go back to my prayer room.

But wasn’t President Luter a breath of fresh air!?!

Anonymous said...

Paige Patterson: Sheri Klouda, Darryl Giyard and many others who felt his jackboot.

Al Mohler: Promoter and protector of CJ Mahaney child molster protector, Paul Debusman and many others who felt his jackboot or "marginalization". His declaration that only NC's want to see the nations rejoice for Christ and on and on ad nauseum.

So who are we that we support such tyrants and hypocrites? It actually says more about the SBC than it does the tyrants.

Wade Burleson said...

John L. Estes,

Sharp, intelligent people (which I acknowledge Danny Akin is) are always capable of making remarks that make no sense.

If it is too personal for calling out people for illogical statements, then I plead guilty.

I am from the old school where if you say something, you are able to back it up.

Nobody in the SBC has ever had to apologize, will ever apologize, or even fathom about apologizing for having 'a heart for the lost.' Someone who says that is attempting to do something other than speak logical truth.

Definition of sycophant - "person who acts obsequiously toward someone important."

I call it as I see it.

Wade Burleson said...

RRR,

Pretty sharp analysis in my opinion. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Just a comment on something you said in item four. "You fight fire with fire."
The late S.I. Hayakawa said in his book,"Language in Thought and Action",chapter 18
"When tempted to fight fire with fire remember the fire department uses water"

Jon L. Estes said...

WADE: "I am from the old school where if you say something, you are able to back it up."

JLE: Then back it up. Show me how Dr. Akin is a sycophant? How did he demonstrate he was "too" eager to help Dr. Patterson by his words?

I get it that you did not agree with him but saying this about Dr. Akin is simply amiss.

DEBBIE K: I said nothing directly about Dr. Patterson and his apology but did address Wade's name calling of Dr. Akin which makes no sense if you know the man.

But hey, Maybe those on here who fawn over Wade are sycophants. I don't think so but it is as silly to make that accusation as it is to make it towards Dr. Akin.

Wade Burleson said...

Jon Estes,

"Dr. Patterson does not have to apologize to me for having a heart for the lost?"

Huh? Is THAT what Dr. Patterson was apologizing to his family for having - "a heart for the lost"? Is that what Dr. Patterson was apologizing to his school for having - "a heart for the lost"?

Of course not. Danny Akin knew it too. The statement was illogical and seemed to me to be a fawning statement. Of course, we can disagree.

Wade Burleson said...

Joe Blackman,

You are free to be crude, vulgar, crass and graceless every day of your life. You, however, will have crude, vulgar, crass and graceless statements directed toward fellow believers deleted from my blog.

I believe in freedom. I just don't enjoy ugly people dominating my comment stream.

Kelly said...

It's hard to believe apologies are sincere when you begin offering excuses equating violating the policy to a Pharisaical rule that God would also be OK with violating.

PP was essentially arguing that those who have a problem with him admitting a muslim student are not really any different than pharisees complaining Jesus healed a man on the Sabbath.

He never addressed the gag order, never addressed the idea that he may be admitting other non-christians (if he admits the father/son duo you mentioned, are we going to hear another apology next year?)

I really didn't care for the trustee saying that we should stop talking to each other about it. That's just hoping it will all go away by the Sept./Oct. meeting.

There's another aspect that I haven't seen discussed yet that maybe you can ponder for me. PP has just demonstrated that the admission standards are flexible and essentially not set in stone or rather up to the president's discretion.

I'm concerned that makes the seminary open to a discrimination lawsuit. I say that because the question becomes, on what grounds can the seminary deny admission to any level of programming to an atheist, non-christian, homosexual, transgender, polygamist, etc., if the seminary has already demonstrated that such standards are not convictional, foundational beliefs.

All a discrimination plaintiff would have to demonstrate is the President's own behavior to set aside admission standards to argue that the seminary can and should do the same for them.

If they were willing to do it once, they should do it again or be made to.

Anonymous said...

Great summary of the implications of accepting Patterson's justification--here ttp://www.walkingtogetherministries.com/2014/06/12/concluding-thoughtsquestions-on-the-situation-at-southwestern-seminary/

Anonymous said...

You need to forgive holding a grudge makes you no better than those you disagree with

Christiane said...

Anonymous,

who are you addressing?
who do you want to be 'forgiven'?
for what?

if you are addressing WADE, I think you need to realize that he has stood up for people who have been treated very poorly . . . he has spoken truth to power and it has cost him a lot to do it . . .

his was a voice raised when many were silent, and that is something we can all respect

In a Christian community where women have received poor treatment, it DOES matter when voices are raised to defend them against tormenters ...
and it DOES matter that these women suffered and others watched and remained silent . . .

so who do we forgive ?

and how is this forgiveness expressed?

and how will it help stop the next case of abuse in a community of faith where vulnerable people have suffered at the hands of powerful people while many watched silently?

just some thoughts
expressed hopefully so that the word 'forgiveness' may not be applied or taken in a way that does not further the healing of a community that is troubled enough already

Anonymous said...

Debbie said she cannot forgive yet Jesus said we are to forgive

Wade Burleson said...

Anonymous,

Just a word about forgiveness.

I know Debbie. She is WILLING to forgive, for her heart is a heart full of the spirit of forgiveness.

Forgiveness, however, is an action. It is a 'promise' never to bring a matter up again. The Bible says, "IF HE REPENTS, then you forgive."

I think what I hear Debbie saying is, "There is no repentance, so I can't help but bring up the issues of Dr. Patterson's duplicity in treating evangelical Christians poorly as compared to Muslims."

Anonymous said...

I just watched that video. I did not hear Dr. Patterson apologize for "having a heart for the lost". I heard him apologize for what his actions caused, not for his actions. I fear that in September the Board of Directors will sweep this under the rug. It is likely that this will be the last that we hear about this.
Ray Earley

Anonymous said...

Student vs staff apples and oranges

Jon L. Estes said...

Sharp, intelligent people (which I acknowledge you are) are always capable of making remarks that make should not be made.

WADE: "If it is too personal for calling out people for illogical statements, then I plead guilty."

I could care less if you think his words were illogical or not (that is up to the hearer), it was the personal attack on Dr. Akin's character when you labeled him a sycophant.

Have you stated in the past that you stick with the subject and will not attack peoples character? If so I would like to know why you chose to go against your own words.

If you have not made such a statement, then I fully apologize for holding your feet to the fire which does not have your name on it.

ScottShaver said...

Wade's comment on the "sharp" analysis of RRR caused me to do a double-take.

I watched the video of Patterson's apology. The first curious thing that caught my attention was the questioning of Patterson by Jim Richards.

Why would a glove be raising such questions to the hand?

RRR could very well be spot on.

ScottShaver said...

Jon Estes:

Let's just say if there are any recent "sycophants" of Paige, Akin would be the horse I'd bet on.

Wade Burleson said...

Jon Estes,

The proper grammar is "I could not care less" instead of "I could care less." If you continue to say, "I could care less," that means you--right now--care a great deal, and there is the possibility in the future that you 'could care less.' If you are attempting to communicate that--right now--you DON'T care about what I've written (which it seems you are trying to communicate to me when you say "I could care less if you think his words were illogical"), then you need to say "I could NOT care less."

You see, words are important, Jon.

It seems that you believe the noun 'sycophant' reflects character. I don't. I believe it reflects an action independent of character. However, in line with the understanding that words do matter, I agree that the word 'sycophant' is a poor choice since it is a noun and not an adjective.. What I should have written was -

"we don't need leaders in the Convention using sycophantic language..."

The correction has been made.

Anonymous said...

If Jim Richards was doing the questioning then you know the whole thing was set up and probably rehearsed numerous times. Just imagine how many times he had to rehearse to get the tears at the right time. Richards and Patterson are two peas in the same pod.

People on this blog need to wave the white flag of surrender and give up on this issue. The trustees are going to do absolutely nothing and Paige knows it. Its a moot topic.

Time to move on to some more pressing SBC sins or those of SBC pastors.

Jon L. Estes said...

Thank you for the change of your comment, it was needed. Also, thank you for the grammatical correction towards me. If that is my only error today, I will be doing better than usual.


Kelly said...

I watched the apology online in TN and got the impression that PP was apologizing that his actions upset people, not that he was apologizing for the actions themselves.

I really don't call that an apology, nor repentance. You repent for the action you did, not the feelings it created in the person you wronged.

This is legal double speak.

If a thief who broke into my house stands before a judge and says "I'm sorry that the owner of the house was upset for my entry of his house" Should the judge consider that as contrition and reduce the sentence?

Should a principal, in listening to the apology of a playground bully accept it when the bully says, "I'm sorry the little kid was upset and didn't like what I was doing." ?

That's the kind of apology that was offered in my opinion.

Chuck Andrews said...

Wade

I agree that the apology was not an apology for an offense that has been recognized and repented of but an apology for the distraction his action caused to this years convention.

Also, I don't think there is any danger of a moralist admitting anyone with sexual deviant behavior or other moral degeneracy into any of our seminaries. As you have pointed out the problem is that admitting someone with the same moral position but of a different gospel (which Paul tells us in Galatians is not a gospel at all) reduces the message of the true Gospel to simply a moral list of do's and don'ts. In essence, it relegates our Seminary as nothing more than the Sanhedrin.

As far as other moralist such as moral atheist, Mormons, JW, etc. being admitted is problematic enough but, does not the concern with the admission of a Muslim have to be elevated? After all, the other moralist groups do not have radical extremest sects that has been and are willing to kill, murder those who disagree and create a set of laws that are totalitarian in nature.

Not accusing the man who has been admitted to SWBTS but we must remember that at least one of the 19 terrorist that carried out the 9/11 attack on America was in the USA on a student visa. Also, not to take away the power of the Gospel, but those terrorist of 9/11 were living amongst us more than a year and were not influenced enough during that time to convince them of the benefits of freedom and convert their ideology.

Is it to farfetched that a scheme could be put in place to thwart "the infidels" evangelization by placing individuals in strategic places to learn how evangelization in Muslim countries is carried out and possibly even carry out terrorist acts in those places as well? Aren't we instructed to "be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves"?

Again, I'm not making any accusation against the Muslim man at SWBTS. I'm not questioning the motive or heart of Dr. Patterson or those who brought the request to him. Nor am I making a general statement of Islam as a whole. I'm not nor to advocate Islamophobia. I'm just saying we are not above being duped by those who are enemies of the Cross of Christ. The idea that one person could make this decision without being duped because his motive is a heart for the lost is asinine.

This kind of thinking probably was not even thought of when the policy that Dr. Patterson broke was put in place. If it was written today, I would think that this kind of concern would have to be in the forefront of our minds. At least it is in my mind.

Chuck

Anonymous said...

As a former Southern Baptist (now attending a non-denominational evangelistic church) ashamedly I have to ask, 'are there term limits to the President of the SWBTS?' I watched Dr. Patterson's 'apology' and felt badly for him; he has aged over the last few years, and maybe he needs to retire. How much more fame and glory does he need? Like many of us married people, yes, he offered an apology, yet you could hear in his voice "yes, but..." as he explained his reasons for his mis-step..

Anonymous said...

She wasn't the one wronged Brother McKissic was

Debbie Kaufman said...

I think what I hear Debbie saying is, "There is no repentance, so I can't help but bring up the issues of Dr. Patterson's duplicity in treating evangelical Christians poorly as compared to Muslims."

Yes, that is what I am saying.

Anonymous: I have spoken with Dr. McKissic face to face a few times and have grown to love him and his family. I am proud to call Dr. McKissic friend. Paige deeply wounded my friend and it deeply wounded me.

ScottShaver said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ScottShaver said...

Burleson correction noted: "We don't need convention leaders using sychophantic language."

Honest question: Is there currently any model other than sychophantic language employed by convention leadership (especially sbc seminary presidents)these days?

Patterson living above the letter of SBC law and commonly established guidelines should come as no surprise to anyone who's studied his operational mechanics in the past.

If apologies were in order, perhaps some issues of duplicity and hypocrisy should have also received address.

William Blosch said...

Since I just got home last night I only now had the opportunity to read the posts regarding Patterson's apology. As I am the messenger who posed the question directly regarding the admission of the Muslim student, I want it clearly understood to those who posted anonymously that I am most assuredly no plant by SWBTS. I am not a student there, never have been, and don't ever intend to be. The question was intended to elicit a direct response from Patterson as to why he blatantly ignored seminary guidelines for admission. My question to all you cowardly anonymous bloggers is Why didn't you step up to the mike after Patterson's very well spun answer and ask a follow-up question so that he couldn't weasel out of it as he did? I asked the question that thousands of others didn't have the guts to ask, including you.
I'm sure that, come October, the trustees will give Patterson a private slap on the wrist and business will continue as usual. I took my turn at the mike to call him to account. Why didn't the rest of you? Next time stop blogging about it and show some courage by showing up at the convention and asking some questions with me.

Wade Burleson said...

Scott,

I think you are asking a good, tough question.

Anonymous said...

Patterson's statement of apology/defense was very carefully worded. While it may possibly be true that the Muslim student Ghassan, is not using cooperative program scholarship money- Ghassan is ubdoubetedly on a full scholarshp. I saw his admission letter myself handed to me from ghassan himself that included the attributance of thousands of dollars in scholarship money signed by paige patterson himself. His education and stay are being funded through other seminary scholarship resources. So money that is being donated to the seminary's various scholarship funds is being spent funding a Muslim student's education even if it is not through the cooperative program's donated funds in particular. Everone failed to catch that when Patterson was speaking. The Muslim's student's education at swbts is being funded by Christian money even though it is not necessearily cooperative program money. Patterson called it "general scholarships" in his public statement.

Mary C. said...

@William Blosch

There WERE people at microphones, who were turned away because time ran out.

Thank you for clarifying that the question was asked of your own volition. I feel sure others would have spoken if given the opportunity.

RRR said...

William Blosch: "I am most assuredly no plant by SWBTS"

I'm not sure which comment from one of the "Anonymous" responses you're referring to but I think that most people, like myself, were not suggesting that your question was staged or used to manipulate an agenda favorable to Brother Paige's defense.

I, for one, was relieved to see your straightforward and honest request for an explanation presented "following" what did seem to be an orchestrated question just preceding your question. That question was regarding SWBTS' offering seminary courses to non-believers in prison.

RRR said...

William Blosch: "I am most assuredly no plant by SWBTS"

I'm not sure which comment from one of the "Anonymous" responses you're referring to but I think that most people, like myself, were not suggesting that your question was staged or used to manipulate an agenda favorable to Brother Paige's defense.

I, for one, was relieved to see your straightforward and honest request for an explanation presented "following" what did seem to be an orchestrated question just preceding your question. That question was regarding SWBTS' offering seminary courses to non-believers in prison.

Tom Kelley said...

Kelly said...

I'm concerned that makes the seminary open to a discrimination lawsuit. I say that because the question becomes, on what grounds can the seminary deny admission to any level of programming to an atheist, non-christian, homosexual, transgender, polygamist, etc., if the seminary has already demonstrated that such standards are not convictional, foundational beliefs.


Kelly, this is an excellent point. The school is now at risk of a lawsuit from any prospective student rejected on the basis of the prospective students religious beliefs. Patterson's actions have put the school in a very difficult position, legally speaking.

And, by the way, the very essence of the SWBTS defense in Dr. Klouda's lawsuit was that the school basically functions as a church, and the theological faculty function as pastors, and it violates their fundamental religious beliefs to allow a woman to function in a pastoral role. So, if faculty are basically the same thing as pastors, doesn't that mean that students are basically the same thing as church members? And then shouldn't Patterson consider it acceptable to allow a Muslim to become a member of a Baptist church, in hopes of winning that person to Christ?

Patterson said, "I made an exception to a rule that I assumed, probably wrongly, the president has a right to make."

"Probably," indeed.

Jon L. Estes said...

Tom "...if faculty are basically the same thing as pastors, doesn't that mean that students are basically the same thing as church members? And then shouldn't Patterson consider it acceptable to allow a Muslim to become a member of a Baptist church, in hopes of winning that person to Christ?"

Not really. Would you tell a Muslim they could not attend one of your Sunday School, Bible Studies, small groups...? Would you turn that person away if they wanted to join your Wednesday night family dinner? Would you refuse to receive an offering they put in the plate as it passed? Would you work to help them with resources, if they were available, if needed> OR... Would you invite them to participate and invest yourself into their lives with the hopes of seeing them come to Jesus?

I think we both know the answer?

Wade Burleson said...

Tom Kelley,

Brilliant

Debbie Kaufman said...

I wonder how things in the Convention would be handled if the media were not interested or watching? I think the Convention plays to the media more than they do the right thing.

ScottShaver said...

William Blosch:

I've not commented anonymously, but lest there be any doubt, YOUR question was certainly in order and needed to be asked. Cudos.

I tend to get a little green around the gills however when I see Richards and Patterson working in tandem.

Force of habit.




Tom Kelley said...

Jon Estes,
Either you missed the point of the analogy or you just want to defend the indefensible. Faculty is to Pastor as Student is to Church Member (not visitor).

Anonymous said...

Patterson has admitted he made a wrong decision and has apologised to those who were offended by his action. He clearly implies he has learned his lesson, and won't do it again but will henceforth work within the constraints of the seminary rules.

Should we not all now share in accepting the beautiful flower arrangement he sent Wade as being a token of his humble and contrite heart?

Hopefully we can we find it in our hearts to give the chap another chance.

Gordon

jdavid said...

Gordon,

I have to wonder, How many chances does a "chap" get before we decide that what we are seeing is his true color and not well-meaning mistakes?

How many people does he get to bully? In how many personal privileges does he get to indulge at others' expense?

If we are known by our fruit, then It seems to me that we have reached the point where we can realize that what we are looking at is the true character. I don't desire to stand in judgment, but doesn't there seem to be enough of a pattern here that we should no longer be fooled?

Anonymous said...

If people are fooled by any shenanigan that Patterson pulls then they are indeed fools themselves. Just check out his history and you should know what to expect.

Anonymous said...

Wade, is the story Patterson told about, B.H. Carroll, true?

i don't trust everything i read at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benajah_Harvey_Carroll

It said:

Converted at the age of 22 at Methodist camp
Divorced his first wife and remarried

Anonymous said...

Wade, is the story Patterson told about, B.H. Carroll, true?

i don't trust everything i read at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benajah_Harvey_Carroll

It said:

Converted at the age of 22 at Methodist camp
Divorced his first wife and remarried

Anonymous said...

http://www.stevekmccoy.com/blog/2014/6/paige-patterson-apology

Anonymous said...

No one seems to care the student is on a full scholarship. So Patterson was not being fully honest.

ScottShaver said...

Another interesting observation and I'm through with the whole sordid affair.

Patterson's apology defended as pure without gall by SBC Fundamentalists ("traditionalists" i.e. 3:16Connect).

On the other hand, SBC Fundamentalists ("reform" i.e. take your pick) say Patterson's apology is a "declaration of war".

Peace on the horizon? More like "hold my beer and watch this!"

Ron said...

William Blosch, thank you for asking the question in a straightforward honest way. I am sure there were others lined up to ask the question but maybe not as well stated as you. I was thankful to hear your question. Jim Richards is a close friend of Paige and I think a member of the same church. His question was recognized first not by coincidence and asked to give Paige a chance to excuse his conduct.

There were many questions that should have been asked but weren’t. Paige said the enrollment was up but the book of reports showed a 3 year decline in total enrollment and a long term decline in M.Div. students.

Is it true there are Mormon students at SWBTS? I would like to have heard Paige answer this.

Is it true that Paige warned any who shared the information about the Muslim student would be terminated whether student or staff? This is a pattern Patterson has followed when he ignores policy. Remember when CB Scott and others were fired at SEBTS by Danny Akin because they brought to light the giving away of a car by Paige to one of his buddies.

Paige’s apology was not an apology for his actions. In fact I am not sure what he apologized for. His many examples of admitting not Christian students were all from undergraduate schools, not seminaries. That is a classic apples and oranges comparison.

His explanation seemed to be that the other seminary Presidents should apologize for not admitting Muslims, atheists and other unbelievers. I guess they do not have a heart for the lost. I suppose unless the trustees act he is saying he has done this before and will do it again.

Ron West

Anonymous said...

The same apples and oranges as comparing students admission to faculty dismissal?

Anonymous said...

Interesting that very few are mentioning PP heretical view of God. He is a modalist just like TD Jakes yet that gets very few mentions in the world.

Bill

Romans 3:25-6

Anonymous said...

Where is your proof? I attended SWBTS under Patterson and he never made a statement close to modalism

Anonymous said...

Listen to the apology again. I'm not sure it was an apology because of his judgment scenario “I believe when I stand before the Lord God, I’m going to say, ‘Dear God, I violated a policy but I didn’t want to stand before you with blood on my hands.” That is why Danny Akin said, “Dr. Patterson does not have to apologize to me for his heart for the lost.” I'm sorry if i cause you sorrow--I broke many of the rules and guidelines set out for entrance into the seminary--BUT i was just being obedient to God.

Paige-- ( I know you are reading this): be obedient to God by witnessing to Muslims outside of the seminary context. Obey the guidelines laid down for SWBTS! Why should you have the authority to break the rules when you decide to do so? Why don't you continue to break the rules by bring non-Christians into seminary to "evangelize" them so you can be obedient to God?

This is what you should do: (1) Go evangelize persons outside of the seminary context and (2) allow the seminary to train men and women for Christian ministry as they are designed to do.

Side note: It would be interesting to get Ken Sande's (Peacemakers Ministry) view of Paige's apology.

jdavid said...

The best points made yet:

1. The other seminary presidents are not being obedient because they haven't allowed non-believers to attend their schools. The will have "blood on their hands."

2. Instead of evangelizing non-believers in the seminary, it is the place of the seminary to train believers to go out and evangelize.

3. The "apology" is not a real apology in any true sense of the definition of that word.

Rex Ray said...

jdavid,

PP’s apology was so ridicules it’s hard to know where to start.

You repeated a good point of PP indicating other schools NOT allowing non-believers would have “blood on their hands.”

Will his ‘gag order’ to the staff and students cause some to leave the seminary resulting in untold numbers not finding Jesus?

How much ‘blood on his hands’ will there be for his appointing Board Members to fire Richard Dilday resulting through the years in making SWBTS a joke?

Speaking of Board Members, the one that spoke after PP put a ‘gag order’ on all of us NOT to talk but only to God. That took the cake! You can see everything swept under the rug at their September meeting.

Ron,

You said, “Jim Richards is a close friend of Paige…”

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe I heard PP say the previous speaker was his “brother-in-law” which would be Jim Richards.

Did you notice Richards gave a pep talk for the new convention of Texas?

The Baptists Standard 11-18-98 quoted Richards saying: “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 Convention, we say, we’re not in competition with you, but we’ve been called to contrast you.”

I thought Jesus said for us to love each other as He loved us.

One way of “contrasting” was brought out in their news journal, Plumbline October 1998, which offered no proof but stated the CBF had leaders that:

1. Deny deity of Christ, need for His death, importance of His virgin birth.
2. Call for the ordination of gay, lesbian, and bisexual persons.
3. Proclaim the Bible does not condemn all forms of homosexual behavior.
4. Call for the ordination of women as senior pastors.
5. Refer to God as “mother.”
6. Defended the reproduction and distribution of child pornography.

When PP ended his tearful speech, the clapping went on and on. The loudest clap that seemed to be leading was close to a microphone. I wonder if that was Richards.

I was late reading this discussion as I just got back from a week of church construction in Mission, TX.

Anonymous said...

His brother in law is Chuck Kelly. The president of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He said he had his brother in law to thank for the idea not that Jim was his brother in law.

Mark said...

They have nothing to apologize for because all their actions -- whether sacking Sherry Klouda or Dr. Mitchell, or supporting Evangelist Darrell Gilyard-- have the approval of G-d. They are above reproach. Talk to them personally and they will tell you unabashedly in more than one way that everything they have done is the right thing. And they can say this with the warmth of an Antartic winter towards those they have sacked or some excuse I wish they would tell Darrel Gilyard's victims.

Anonymous said...

Wade,
Do you believe that CP dollars should underwrite the seminary training of non-SBC students? At SBTS non-SBC students pay twice as much as SBC students. It is widely none on the SBTS campus that students who are part of CJ Mahney's church plant in Louisville are being given the discounted tuition!
Any thoughts?

ScottShaver said...

Anonymous:

If that is the case at SBTS (not sure it is) then it just goes to prove that membership has its privileges.

dr. james willingham said...

Dr. B.H. Carroll came home from the war to find his wife living with another man. This led to a divorce. Later, he married another woman and became the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Waco (then on4e of the leading churches in the Southern Baptist Convention). After that he founded SWBTS. Changing things to conform to one's views and practices is a temptation that many often feel. Just consider the painting out of the cigar in Dr. Carroll's hand in the work that hangs in the administration building.

Mark said...

Dr. James Willingham, I knew it was a great early SBC pastor who was divorced. I kept looking for who it was and now I know. Mr. Carroll wouldn't have been able to teach at the seminary he founded. Modern Baptists wouldn't probably like Spurgeon. He was a political liberal. How times change.

Anonymous said...

Paige Patterson needs to return to basic Bible teachings so that he can extend the same mercy to others. There is enough evidence to prove that Patterson has destroyed the lives of other God's children with his authoritarian leadership. Patterson's friends who visit this blog should kindly beg him to meditate on the biblical story of the unmerciful servant.

Shawn said...

Danny Akin doesn't need to act in a sycophantic manner - he is a member of the Triumvirate that occupies the smoke filled back room that dictates the direction and actions of the SBC. His remarks towards Patterson are what you would expect of one member blindly and unapologetically supporting another.

Anonymous said...

Having long ago left the Jesus-less insanity of the SBC, I still marvel at how weird is has gotten. Listening to SBC leaders lie about "competing" baptist groups is like watching Fox News or suffering through a GOP campaign ad. Patterson and his cronies are modern day Pharisees and pathetic "prophetic" parasites. Baptists let this abomination happen by lusting for power and wealth and the comfort of exclusion. You have brought shame to the faith and nearly brought down a once great seminary (SWBTS) where I received my M.Div. in 1976. Will there even be a SWBTS in 2025? I doubt it.