In this article, R. Albert Mohler, Jr. remembers, “the conservative revision of the Southern Baptist Convention’s confession of faith, the ‘Baptist Faith and Message.'”
I just read the new statement on Justice, Repentance, and the SBC (hereafter referred to as JRS) posted over at https://www.justicerepentancesbc.org on 12/18/2020. I’d like to offer several quick reactions.
Included in these reactions is also my reaction to J.D. Greear’s statement on the JRS statement. I guess you’re reading a statement on statements that are themselves responses to statements (like here and more recently here).
In this post-Thanksgiving 2020 season, we’ve been inundated with a cornucopia of statements. Praise God from whom all blessings flow.
So, here are my initial reactions:
1. I’m not sure how many times the SBC can repent for its being founded on slavery. The JRS statement is proudly headlined with “PUBLISHED ON DECEMBER 18TH 2020, THE 155TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE PROCLAMATION OF THE THIRTEENTH AMENDMENT, ABOLISHING SLAVERY AND INVOLUNTARY SERVITUDE”
Which, to me, is in itself another statement. Praise God that slavery has been abolished in our country. But it is placed in the article in such a way as to show a union exists between the JRS and the 13th amendment that doesn’t exist between those who would oppose the JRS.
The SBC has repeatedly acknowledged its ugly, sin-laden history and repented of it. In fact, I challenge anyone to find one Southern Baptist who does not repudiate slavery.
The point, of course, is to label one’s position in such a way that to disagree with it is to disagree with the 13th amendment. As Captain Hook would say, “Bad form.”
2. The original statement is so laden with CRT categories like “power” and “influence” that it is either done in blatant ignorance or maliciously. I don’t understand how those writing this statement could not see this.
To say that those opposed to CRT are just concerned about losing power is to itself affirm the tenets of CRT even if people continue to deny holding to CRT!
3. To accuse brothers, like me, who rightly hate CRT of only caring about “winning” is the height of uncharitableness.
Faithful brothers and sisters who have given their lives to serving Christ are boiled down to simply only being concerned about “winning”. That’s a shameful move.
4. President Greear said “I, for one, remain committed to a posture of humility.” A statement on abasement I guess.
I have a few issues with that. First, J.D. could have exemplified this humility by stepping down as president and giving his position to a minority person. That is if he *actually* believed what he is writing. But it appears to me he does not. If he did, then why hasn’t he humbly stepped aside?
Secondly, why is pro CRT the “humble” position? This seems like virtue signaling to the max. Thirdly, we must be wary of the tactic over the years of moving away from certainty not with the word “doubt” but with the word “humility.” Note that I am not accusing J.D. of being sinister.
But I am saying this historically orthodoxy moves from certainty, to “humility”, to doubt, to rejection. This is not the type of humility we want to have.
Fourthly, and I am not the one who initially pointed this out, this statement reeks of the “Trumpism” so many rail against. It sounds like, “I’m the most humble person I know.” A leader who is humble doesn’t have to tell people how humble he is.
5. “Great Commission Baptists” is going to mean woke Baptists isn’t it? It’s going to mean that if you’re not woke, you don’t care about the Great Commission. This is sad.
6. The SBC presidents’ statement against CRT has stirred this up. Good. It needs to be stirred up.
We need the battle lines drawn so that Southern Baptists can clearly see what is going on and what is at stake here. I don’t agree with the JRS statement (as you have probably discerned) but I’m glad it now exists because it helps to identify that there are two diametrically opposed views here.
7. The issue remains over the sufficiency of Scripture. I don’t care how many times someone says they hold to the sufficiency of Scripture. If they employ CRT categories, they practically deny it (whether sinisterly intentional or just ignorantly).
8. Please pray for the SBC. Nashville is going to be telling toward our future. I remain committed to the Southern Baptist Convention because I refuse to hand over our institutions to a liberal trajectory and wokism. May God bring reformation.
Aaron Ren has released an episode of his podcast, The Masculinist, with critical insights for those interested in learning lessons for today from church history. The focus of the episode is the battle for conservative theology within the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod.
In this article from Ronnie Floyd’s Advancing the Vision series, Floyd writes, “The future is not in having cultural conversations apart from the Bible. This will always lead to division. Southern Baptist pastors, leaders, and churches need to be having biblical conversations about cultural matters.”
For all our talk of war we often miss the battlefield. The apostle Paul, in the sixth chapter of his epistle to the Ephesians, speaks of putting on the whole armor of God that the soldier of God might stand against the devil.
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.
We note here that our ultimate enemies are not human beings, but spiritual forces. The way we fight spiritual forces differs from how we face physical, fleshly beings.
Why am I a Southern Baptist? I was born this way. I’m also a Baptist by conviction. And I’m a Southern Baptist because I’m a sucker for the Bible and missions.
The Bible and missions.
The Bible and missions.
The Bible and missions.
When I think about the Southern Baptist Convention, everything always comes back to that.
Randy Davis, President and executive director, Tennessee Baptist Mission Board, writing for The Baptist and Reflector:
Let’s make one thing clear from the outset: There is absolutely no denominational hierarchy when it comes to the Southern Baptist Convention… If we allow drift from this benchmark polity, the damage will be extremely significant and invite grave consequences.