This week, I will be in Houston for the Southern Baptist Convention. Though many of you who read my blog regularly are not Southern Baptist, I hope that you will be in prayer for our Convention. Pray that we will be faithful to the Lord, obedient to the Scriptures, and united in Great Commission focus. You can watch the pastor’s conference and the meetings via live-stream here.
Below, I have linked to some personal reflections on the SBC that I have posted here in the past, and which will give you an idea of the current situation of the Convention.
(For those of you who are attending the SBC this year, I invite you to a Gospel Project sponsored breakfast on “Christ-Centered Preaching and Teaching.” The breakfast will be held Tuesday morning, from 6:30-8:00 a.m. We’re giving away lots of books. And it’s not too late to register. You’re also invited to the B21 Panel on Tuesday, where a limited number of advance copies of Clear Winter Nights will be available.)
Some SBC Articles
What do Matt Chandler, Beth Moore, Fred Luter, David Jeremiah, Rick Warren, Steven Furtick, and Billy Graham, all have in common? They are Southern Baptists.
Every few years or so, the low-grade fever in the SBC takes on a new form. For a while, it was the church growth movement. Then, it was charismatic practices. Lately, it’s been Calvinism, Traditionalism and everything in between. Here are some personal reflections on our current situation.
Let’s not shrink back from the future that awaits us. We may be given the honor of suffering for the Name. So let’s willingly put ourselves at odds with the culture, expect the social ostracism we can see on the horizon, and stand joyfully amidst the ruins of Christendom while we continue to proclaim the excellencies of the Risen One.
The Southern Baptist blogosphere has erupted in conversation on whether it’s proper to use phrases like “asking Jesus into your heart,” “accepting Christ,” or methods like the “sinner’s prayer” when sharing the gospel. Like many online conversations, this one has tended to generate more heat than light, and I get the feeling that good folks on both sides of this issue may be talking past one another.
Now is not the time to water down our Baptist distinctives, seek unity at the level of ecclesiology, and pretend that all evangelicals are the same. Allies in WWII did not give up their sovereignty or their countries’ distinctive traits. But neither did they treat each other as opponents. They built bridges in order to see freedom advanced beyond their countries’ borders. Likewise, this is the time for Southern Baptists to maintain the bridges, not tear them down. We stand with evangelical allies. We are in a position to do for evangelicals what evangelicals once did for Southern Baptists.
The fact that we lost the battle over the Book almost caused me to lose hope. But we still have a chance. The gospel and the cursed Commission are the tools the Enemy has used against us all these years. You will do well to make sure that these Baptists focus on everything else.
I fear what lies in store for us. The Enemy will not give up on these people. So neither should we.
What Southern Baptists Can Learn from Romanian Baptists