Peter Lumpkin’s, an often vocal and aggressive critic of Calvinism on the blogs has recently posted an article titled Calvinists Critique Morris Chapman's Clarification: Part II in which he mostly criticizes Timmy Brister for his critique of Morris Chapman’s (somewhat infamous) comments to the convention this year in Louisville, KY where Chapman felt obligated to (once again) take a broad swipe at Calvinism in the SBC.
Now Peter, who is fast becoming known as an aggressive Anti-Calvinist and Anti-Alcohol “watch-dog” in the SBC, wasted no time in this article in going after Timmy Brister with both barrels blazing. Ironically, or should I say in typical fashion, in this article Peter is guilty of exhibiting toward Brister the exact attitudes he has accused Timmy of having toward Chapman. It appears that Peter is willing to allow himself the freedom to be critical of others in the SBC but would very much like to muzzle all other voices, especially those who speak out against those who abuse their positions in the SBC to advance their personal Anti-Calvinist or Anti-Alcohol agendas.
However, if Peter (who repeatedly refers to Brister as a “strict/stern/hyper Calvinist” and his Calvinism as “skewed”) wishes to engage in this tactic of “attacking” those who disagree with him, instead of debating the issues… well then he should not be shocked when others go after him in like fashion.
But more to the point of this post is something very disturbing that Peter says about the Southern Baptist statement of faith; The Baptist Faith and Message 2000. Now, Peter is notorious for (how shall I say this…) displaying “Extreme Gymnastic” skills in twisting the meaning of the English language, and playing “Fast and Loose” with his reinterpreting the meaning of words, grammar, and sentence structure as seen in his comment below.
“ And, so far as the BF&M is concerned, Timmy wants it to definitively teach regeneration precedes faith. I’ll bet that would be a new one on Adrian Rogers, Jerry Vines, and all the other non-Calvinists who worked on the revision committee.
Personally, I think the BF&M is rubbery enough to include strict Calvinists, modified Calvinists, and non-Calvinists among its supporters. For Brister, however, non-Calvinists and even modified Calvinists like Akin find no support there. It definitively teaches the theological tomfoolery that there exists an animal others have called a born-again unbeliever. ”
Here is what the Baptist Faith and Message actually says:
“ A. Regeneration, or the new birth, is a work of God's grace whereby believers become new creatures in Christ Jesus. It is a change of heart wrought by the Holy Spirit through conviction of sin, to which the sinner responds in repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Repentance and faith are inseparable experiences of grace.”
Peter appears to be reading this portion of the BFM2000 with blinders on, so I will put the part he appears to have a hard time reading in bold print.
"It (Regeneration) is a change of heart wrought by the Holy Spirit through conviction of sin, to which the sinner responds in repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ"
That any man, with any degree of integrity, would attempt to tell Southern Baptist that our statement of faith does not in fact teach that regeneration precedes repentance is either a display of intellectual dishonesty, or crude arrogance… or both.
Peter’s strict/stern/hyper bias against Calvinism and all Calvinist is on full display in this article. And this salvo from the pen of Peter Lumpkin is a clear indication that the long war on Calvinism in the SBC is far from over, and in fact a new chapter in this war has just began; “The Battle for the Baptist Faith and Message”.