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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

GRITS For the SBC


G - Great Commission Focused
R - Repentance from Arrogance and Divisiveness
I  - Intentional in Seeking Unity
T - Total Commitment to the BFM2000
S - Sensitive to the Views of Others






Like it our not... Southern Baptist are a very diverse group of people.  You may not agree, but I believe that is a good thing!  I know there are those within the Southern Baptist family who are obsessed, it would appear, with imposing their identity and doctrine upon all Southern Baptist regardless of the utter destruction such an agenda would have to the Convention if successful. 


I believe there is great strength in diversity, even if it means that we must at times agree to disagree on some pretty important stuff.  Other denominations have gone down the path of seeking a very "narrow identity", and sometimes even a "forced conformity", and each time it has not ended well for them.  


Just as most of us have our own preference for what we like to eat for breakfast, most of us have a preference for the church in which we worship.  We want breakfast made "our way"... and we church done "our way".  Let me just say that "there is absolutely noting wrong in either of these".  One of the great blessing of freedom in this great nation is that if I don't like what they are serving for breakfast at one restaurant I can simply go somewhere else.  Don't like what they are serving at McDonald's?  Then go to Waffle House.  Don't like what they are serving at Waffle House?  Then go to Denny's.  No, where we get into trouble as Southern Baptist is when we feel the need to order breakfast for everyone else.  


Have you ever saw a couple at a restaurant and the man ordered for both himself and his wife (without asking her)?  I don't know about you, but on the few occasions that I have witnessed this I got a knot in the pit of my stomach because it was obvious to all that the wife was living under the domination of her husband.  Is this what any of us really want for the Southern Baptist Convention?  I certainly hope not, because the movie Sleeping with the Enemy depicts what will happen if any one group of Southern Baptist think they can "rule" over the convictions of other believers... it will not end well. 


Perhaps it is time that all parties within the Southern Baptist Convention started allowing their brothers and sisters to order off the menu for themselves?  And don't forget the G.R.I.T.S "I'll have mine with a little cheese please". 


Grace for the Journey,    

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Southern Baptist Theological Confusion

As I have been saying for a long, long time... The Majority of Southern Baptist are "Atheological".  

Atheological refers to one's lack of  concern for theology, and this new survey from LifeWay research shows that about 50% of Southern Baptist Pastors, if not unconcerned about theology, are at the very least "Greatly Confused!" 



"If a person does not care about their theology, they miss the importance of rooting their entire life in the true knowledge of God and a true, coherent, rational, theological worldview. A person's relationship with God is built on the foundation of what one believes about God and what it means to be right with God, and this is the most important determining factor in shaping the way a person lives. An atheological person does not seriously reflect on their own foundational worldview assumptions (e.g., what is truth, who is God, does this matter?), nor do they see how doing so would be relevant to everyday life." - [http://www.mormonwiki.org/Atheological_tendency


Some are trying to use the above survey data to say that the majority of Southern Baptist have a problem with the growing influence of Calvinism in the SBC.  If that is true then an equal majority of Southern Baptist have a problem with the lingering influence of Arminian (Non-Calvinism) in the SBC.  But neither of these are what this survey truly shows... 


No, this survey shows that, sadly, over 50% of Southern Baptist Pastors are "atheological".  


I don't have any data to back this up, but it is my suspicion that this is largely a generational issue as theology was not stressed in seminary in the previous generations of Southern Baptist as, thankfully, it is today.  I pray that as the years go by that we begin to see an improvement in these numbers.  


Grace for the Journey