Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Dr. Kevin Ezel To Be Presented as President of the North American Mission Board

My book project over the summer turned into two books, and today the first book entitled Enid's Night of Generals is being released. The second book, Red Earth Courage, will be available sometime in 2011. Both books are works of history, and I thoroughly enjoyed writing them. The respite from blogging has also been refreshing. There are two or three observations I'd like to make as I begin to write again at Grace and Truth to You.

(1). My favorite blogs are those that make the readers think. I have gone back and read my father's blog on several occasions over the summer, using much of the material he has written for my own Bible studies and research. There are many other blogs that edify me in the same manner, and they make blogging and reading blogs worthwhile.

(2). Those blogs that expose the duplicity and dishonesty of spiritual leaders have their place as well. I can't help but think of the Scriptures that speak of judgment beginning in the house of God. For too long we Christians have railed against the burning houses of culture while ignoring the truth-twisting, termite infested foundation of our own house. Blogs will continue to ensure that Christian men and women think twice before they speak or write exaggerations or lies for personal benefit.

(3). There is a vitriol and animosity among bloggers that is difficult to explain. I learned a long time ago, however, that the more someone shouts, the weaker his argument.

It's time to start blogging again. I will write softly.

The Southern Baptist Convention is working hard to move forward with a missions and evangelistic emphasis. To that end, the important matter of electing the new Presidents of the two largest mission agencies of the Southern Baptist Convention is being closely watched. The International Mission Board continues to search for her new President, but the Presidential Search Committee for the North American Mission Board will be presenting Dr. Kevin Ezel for approval as their new President. NAMB trustees are scheduled to gather in Atlanta on September 14 for the presentation of Dr. Ezell.

The influence of Southern Seminary and Dr. Al Mohler continues to be felt throughout our Convention. Dr. Ezel is Russ Moore and Al Mohler's pastor at the multi-campus Highview Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky. He is widely loved by the Southern students and faculty who attend his church for his visionary leadership skills, theological acumen, and heart for missions.

It's interesting to note that Dr. Hershael York, former campus pastor at Highview, is the Chairman of Kentucky's Great Commission Task Force that recently recommended  Kentucky's Cooperative Program receipts be evenly split between the state and the national convention. Over the next seven years Kentucky will move toward 50%  of CP receipts remaining in Kentucky with 50%  going to national agencies, including NAMB.

The ideological and friendship ties between the new crop of SBC leaders is tight. They are good men. However, I hope they will not be unwilling to broaden the tent of cooperation and share leadership with those outside their circle of friendship or theological views. I also hope SBC pastors and churches who are not as influenced by Southern Seminary or reformed theology will not take the same route conservatives took years ago when they decreased CP giving because they didn't like SBC leadership. I can't help but think that even though Southern Baptist Convention leaders change, "the give more song" remains the same. It's just that those who have now joined the giving chorus are those who once refused to sing.

One day, someday, Southern Baptists might actually realize the dangers of demanding conformity on tertiery issues in a convention built on cooperation, no matter which ideology is currently in vogue or in leadership.

These are interesting days.

In His Grace,