Indy for the Outie: Open Thread

Tim Brister —  June 10, 2008 — 173 Comments

Apparently, I am not the only one who could not attend this year’s SBC Annual Meeting, so I thought I might try the open thread thing again like last year. The purpose of this post is simply to open up the discussion to talk about anything related to the annual meeting (a recent article by Sam Hodges of Dallas Morning News has been referenced a time or two already). To view the events of the SBC Meeting, click here. Some of the topics may include:

* SBC Presidential race (who and why)
* Regenerate Church Membership (and other resolutions)
* Will the 101st resolution on alcohol get passed?
* Will the Garner Motion (re: BF&M) get raised again?
* Will the IMB policies and push for reversal get a hearing?
* Will will be said regarding Calvinism? Emerging church movement?
* Will the Cooperative Program be as dominant an issue as years before?
* How many people attending this year will not have gray hair?
* How many times will the shofar be blown in the next two days?
* How many non-white people also will be in attendance?
* Any thoughts on the SBC “Hall of Fame Faith”?
* Will the issue of the environment and global warming “heat up” again?
* What about the camel method and missions strategies?
* Will Wiley Drake’s nominating speech be as entertaining as last year?
* Will there be more or less messengers this year? What does this say?
* With the SBC in decline, how will Southern Baptists respond?
* Will there be any surprises or unsuspecting controversies to erupt this year?
* Or could it be that people are growing more ambivalent and jaded in the process?
* Could there be a renewal and consensus, working toward a “Great Commission Resurgence?”

Well, that’s some off the top of my head for starters. :) If there is anything that crosses your minded somewhat related, feel free to bring it up (especially if you have been uniquely qualified by one of these pictures):

Or if you have mastered the technique to reaching out to the young leaders of the SBC like my favorite minister of mischief, King Kummer has in this video:

Or if love has compelled you to twitter all the happenings as Ed Stetzer has (hilarious pics BTW).

But seriously, there are some things I find particularly important, as you know. Tuesday morning at the Founders Breakfast Eric Redmond will be talking about “The Reformation That Must Come.” Speaking of Eric, I think that, were he to run this year for Prez, he would win hands down (hint). I am also hoping that Dr. Dockery’s recent release on Southern Baptist Consensus and Renewal will win the day when it comes to the infighting and narrowing of cooperation. For those who might want to check in at times where issues are most like to be raised, you might want to mark these following times:

Tuesday:

8:40 a.m. – Motions
2:45 p.m. – Election of Officers (1)
3:10 p.m. – Motions
4:20 p.m. – Motions
4:55 p.m. – Election of Officers (2)
7:20 p.m. – Election of Officers (3)
7:40 p.m. – “Previously Scheduled Business”

Wednesday:

8:20 a.m. – Election of Officers (4)
8:50 a.m. – “Previously Scheduled Business”
9:05 a.m. – Committee on Resolutions (1)
10:35 a.m. – Election of Officers (5)
6:20 p.m. – Presentation of New Officers
7:00 p.m. – “Previously Scheduled Business”
7:15 p.m. – Committee on Resolutions (2)

Other reports worth checking into are the IMB and NAMB reports, each of the six seminaries, and the Executive Committee (two parts). You can view the entire schedule by going here. Lastly, I will say that I have appreciated the leadership of Dr. Frank Page over the past two years. He is a true statesman for the SBC, and while I have disagreed with him on some issues (not the least of which is Calvinism), I appreciate his commitment to being a gracious man with an irenic spirit (see also Ben Cole’s tribute). I hope that whoever fills his shoes, regardless of his theological or political convictions, they will carry on with this same spirit and demeanor.

So there you go. The thread is open to talk about whatever else related to the SBC. In the meantime, I, too, will twit a little myself. :)

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  • Zach

    Hey Timmy, While you’re up there my friend Bobby Lane will be there. He just finished with a two year journeyman stint in Peru and he’s going to be presenting on the IMB’s behalf. Please meet up with him. He’s one of the most amazing people you’ll meet. He’s got my cell phone so just call him. You would both enjoy it. Well that’s all for now. Oh yeah, and Spence and Amy had their baby.

  • http://www.joethorn.net Joe Thorn

    Kind of wish I was there this year, but I’m not. It’s usually turned around for me the other way. I am praying for good things to happen over the next couple days. Timmy, if you’re man enough, you and Tom will hit the Olan Mills booth and take a Paul/Timothy photo like the one above. You can make the time, so no excuses! Just spend less time stealing pens and Bit O Honey’s from booths you have no intention of interacting with.

    BTW, I don’t recognize those guys in the photo.

  • http://downshoredrift.com Alan Cross

    There were just motions about getting rid of churches with female pastors and posting the American flag, among other things. Also, the Gaither Vocal Band sang a song about being somewhere between Jesus and John Wayne. The crowd seemed to like that a great deal.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Zach,

    Unfortunately, I am here in FL and not there in Indy. I would love to see Bobby again (especially if he still has the dreads). Anyone who can trek the AT backwards is a stud. Seriously though, I want to get up with him, so if you have any contact info please send it via email (I will try calling him via your phone). That’s great to hear about Spence and Amy by the way! Snowbird is becoming quite the family!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Joe,

    I think he Olan Mills pic of Tom and me would never be lived down. :) I guess that’s why I am stuck here in Cape Coral. But yeah, that photo of you and Steve is priceless. I could not miss another opportunity of spreading the love. BTW, you are in trouble for getting me into twittering.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Alan,

    I can’t believe that I missed the first motion. I thought Indy was on central time! Oh well. So the first two motions were about women in ministry and American flags. Hmmm.

    I did notice that BP is reporting that 6,000 messengers have registered. If that is anywhere close to the final count, that is over 2,000 less than last year (in 07, 11k were expected and close to 9k registered).

    http://www.bpnews.net/blog/article.asp?id=129&title=More+than+6%2C000+messengers+registered

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    From Tom Ascol’s blog:

    Though I didn’t hear it myself, I heard on good authority that Charles Lowrey actually said in his message that God told him to get “baptized again” as an encouragement for others to get baptized who might be hesitant…and he was advocating this for the pastors to whom he was preaching!

    Yikes.

    Tom has also mentioned that a resolution on regenerate church membership will come out, but is likely that it will NOT include the language of repentance. Tom plans to speak to this resolution and call for an amendment, when which, as he says, another author will speak in agreement. Let’s pray that a strong stance on integrity in church membership comes out.

  • http://downshoredrift.com Alan Cross

    We need to repent of not repenting, actually. Unreal. Maybe by rebaptizing everyone, they are secretly talking about repentance. ?????

    Jack Wilkerson, the guy who made the motion about no SBC entity heads running for president, is real high up in the Executive Committee, I just learned. Interesting.

    Thanks for the registration info. I’m trying to blog this over at my place as well and you’re giving me some good stuff. I might call you in a little while.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Ronnie Floyd’s reflection on Greensboro (06) and disappointment:

    After the public announcement was made in May, by Dr. Johnny Hunt, that my name would be placed into nomination, events began that were unlike any I have ever had cast against me . These events began to raise questions about whether I was worthy to serve as the President. Even though I had served the denomination in three of its most prominent positions–President of the Pastors’ Conference, Chairman of the Executive Committee (the most influential committee in the convention), and a 7-member committee to restructure the entire convention–many felt I was unworthy to serve as President. As one of the top 100 churches giving to the Cooperative Program that year, as well as our church investing hundreds of thousands of dollars in other mission endeavors, plus being in the top 10 churches in baptisms over the past few years, I was regarded as not worthy to serve our denomination in this capacity.

    http://www.betweensundays.com/disappointment-with-hope/

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Motion Meeting 1 (Tuesday morning)

    1. A motion to change the SBC bylaws so that, to avoid a conflict of interest, no SBC entity president or the president of the SBC Executive Committee can serve as SBC president.

    2. A motion to change the SBC Constitution to state that churches which have female senior pastors are not in friendly cooperation with the convention.

    3. A motion to receive a love offering at the annual meeting for Indiana flood victims. The offering would be channeled through the Indiana Baptist State Convention.

    4. A motion to make the SBC annual meeting more child and family friendly.

    5. A motion to post, alongside the American flag, the flag of each branch of the Armed Forces.

    6. A motion asking the Executive Committee to re-evaluate the SBC’s relationship with the Baptist World Alliance.

    http://www.bpnews.net/blog/article.asp?id=133&title=6+motions+introduced

  • Jason

    Timmy,

    Do you find it odd that the language of dealing with female pastors always seems to be female “senior pastors”…as if female pastors of any kind were allowable? Oh wait, we just call them “minister” or “director”.

    Jason

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jason,

    I think the issue is leadership that implies spiritual authority (teaching and ruling) that Scripture reserves for qualified men only. That said, women can have significant roles in ministry, as it has been argued that the backbone of many churches are the women in the church. I think the distinction of “senior pastor” compared to other roles in ministry is intended to separate leadership roles that include spiritual authority and those that do not. But then again, I may be totally off on what the motion is about.

    Your thoughts?

  • Jason

    Timmy,

    I did not mean to imply that women were disallowed from ministry altogether or that women were unimportant in any way in the life of the church. Of course that is ridiculous.

    I just find it odd that language of women pastors in the SBC is always centered around “senior pastor”. Of course, in Scripture we have no such office as “senior” pastor…and that all the pastors must be males. We all know that teaching responsibilities and authority is not limited to only the senior pastor, but is carried through all pastors since they all teach and lead and have authority.

    I just find it odd that we seem to frame the issue in a way that opens the door for female pastors, but not senior pastor. There are several SBC churches in my association with female youth pastors (some are called directors, some pastors/ministers). Now, I know there is some dispute on this issue, but do we really believe that the only “pastor” that Scripture refers to is the “senior pastor”??

    I think we need to be more clear on this issue. “Senior pastor” language confuses the issue, IMO. In fact, a friend of mine has argued that women pastors are ok along these same lines…because the other pastors fall under the authority of the male senior pastor, they can have female pastors. I just think that is missing the point of the scriptural mandate, don’t you?

    Jason

  • Jason

    BTW, I am sure I would agree with the motion made this morning….but every time I hear the phrase “senior pastor” as opposed to “pastor” within the context of women in ministry it starts this debate afresh in my mind.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jason,

    Well, I am not a big fan of the “senior pastor” language to boot. It leads one to believe that other pastors cannot exercise or execute their duties that would involve shepherding, leading, feeding, etc. While it may simply be a matter of semantics, I would prefer “lead pastor” or something like that. The “senior” language sounds too much like a corporation (as well as “the executive pastor”).

    I agree that there should be more clarity on this issue. Scripture reveals the offices of elder/pastor and deacon and does not difference between classes of elders/pastors.

  • Jason

    I agree with your thoughts.

    Sorry I digressed from the topic of the motion…but it is something I have been thinking a lot about considering the churches around us with which we cooperate.

    There are several churches that we work with quite well in our community (events, services, etc.) but this has become a talking point issue among some of us because 1 of the churches has female pastors on staff (but sees no problem since they are under the authority of the male senior pastor). Tough stuff.

    Sorry to hijack the discussion.

    Jason

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Motions for Meeting 2 (Tuesday afternoon)

    (Ben Cole) Request X-Com design and implement a standardized form of reporting for all six seminaries to the Convention

    (Eric Williams) BF&M article 1 on inerrancy: HCSB the translators and other scholars do not believe that verses ought to be there; motion not to allow HCSB or any translation to be used in podium in any convention meetings

    (Barrot Lamp) Reintroduce one in 06, limit of service/tenure and lengths of term limits for all trustees and officers

    (Ben Smith) Study the possibilities and changes for the week of convention to accommodate to do mission work; creatively consider how week of convention be used to educate, encourage, and equip ministers through seminars, lectures, etc.

    (Rodney Fry) All SBTS seminaries provide all SBTS students enrolled in internet classes be given same fees as those on campus students

    (Bill Sanderson) Declare that Broadway Baptist Church of Ft. Worth, TX not to be in friendly cooperation with SBC

    (Alan Thompson) 80 different languages spoken in CA churches; all must affirm BF&M2000; it is available only in English and Spanish

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jason,

    Your questions are not hijacking, brother. :) This is an issue that needs to be addressed. Should women you minister to youth be called “pastors” (elders)? What about ministers of music? Children ministers? etc. Furthermore, when women come to speak to an issue, is it possible that what they are saying/testifying could be turned into “preaching”? I’ve heard some women make announcements that sounded almost like a three-point sermon!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    The following morning motions were recommended to the Executive Committee:

    A motion to change the SBC bylaws so that, to avoid a conflict of interest, no SBC entity president or the president of the SBC Executive Committee can serve as SBC president.

    A motion to change the SBC Constitution to state that churches which have female senior pastors are not in friendly cooperation with the convention.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Frank Page’s message focused on two things:

    1. A Call to Repentance (the problem is with ME)
    2. A Call for Great Commission Resurgence

    Where have we heard this before?

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Bobby Welch’s vision of the SBC’s partnership with “like-minded brothers and sisters” across the evangelical landscape is certainly different from the anti-ecumenical “Baptist Identity” cohort. Did someone forget to send Bobby the BI memo? ;)

  • http://iemissional.com Marty Duren

    BF&M article 1 on inerrancy: HCSB the translators and other scholars do not believe that verses ought to be there; motion not to allow HCSB or any translation to be used in podium in any convention meetings Emphasis mine.

    Uhm…is it all going to be Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek? Which text? I’d support this just to watch the “Theme Interpretations.”

  • Jim Champion

    Are we getting back together with the BWA?? I have always thought our divorce from them was a mistake

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Marty,

    You know, and I know, there is only one authorized version of the Bible. Stetzer calls the HCSB, the “Hard Core Southern Baptist” Bible. Great to hear from you man.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jim,

    I am not aware who all is behind the BWA reconciliation. I am curious about how this will pan out. I know that Bill Wagner is for a new partnership with BWA.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    * Nominating Speeches for SBC President *

    Junior Hill nominating speech for Frank Cox

    1. His convictions (theological)
    2. His generous giving (CP; 47th in entire SBC)
    3. His leadership ability (experience and proven)
    4. His friendly and lovable spirit (humble and approachable)

    John Marshall nominating speech for Avery Willis

    1. Revival
    2. Discipleship (Masterlife)
    3. Cooperative Program (lifelong commitment)
    4. Great Commission (missions strategist)

    “one of us . . .”
    new challenge to build on Conservative Resurgence

    Wade Burleson nominating speech for Bill Wagner

    1. 50 years worked for Southern Baptists
    2. pastored nine churches, seven which he planted
    3. 30 years worked with IMB, 18 as missionary in Austria
    4. 1995 called to be professor of evangelism and missions at GGTS
    5. author of several books regarding Great Commission
    current president of Olivet University
    6. “one of ours . . .”
    7. there has never been a president as a small church pastor, mission strategist, or missionary: Bill Wagner represents all of them
    8. he understands the world around us

    Alan Stoddard nominating speech for Les Puryear

    1. continue to practice involvement of new people invited to table
    2. reach out to all ethnic minorities and work to make sure they are seated at the table
    3. he will be able to relate to small church pastors, who make up of 80% of our churches

    Don Roberts nominating speech for Wiley Drake

    1. grown as a Christian man and example
    2. man with conservative convictions
    3. family man
    4. motion to boycott Disney

    Ted Traylor nominating speech for Johnny Hunt

    1. a man with a heart for the nations (3.3 million to missions; 78 churches planted; 165 people called into ministry; 149 serving in missions; Acts 1:8 leader)
    2. a man with a heart for the next generation (look around you – 7,000 here; Hunt invested in 25,000 at Timothy-Barnabas conference); young leaders need him as president
    3. Hunt is a uniter; will build bridges; forge us to a hopeful future

    “you know him . . . you have heard him . . . now vote for him”

  • Jason

    Wait…I thought Hunt wasn’t a fan of “building bridges”. Hmm.

    I do know him…I HAVE heard him…but I would not vote for him. He is not a voice for young leaders. He is a voice for the good ol boy network.

    Now…I don’t know who I would vote for…but I know for whom I would not vote.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Motion Meeting 3

    (Jeff Burgess?) guidelines for anyone serving in agencies, boards, etc.
    1. give evidence of having received Jesus
    2. be member of SBC in full cooperation
    3. be in good standing in local congregations
    4. agree to abstain from alcoholic beverages
    5. agree with Baptist Faith & Message

    (Wiley Drake) convention request X-Com to do study on how we as a Convention can implement article 14 and 15 in BF&M, especially cooperation withing other various denominations

    (Andy Perriman) LifeWay be authorized and funded to give churches capabitlities to conference and teleconference their church events through their website

    (Scott Wilfong?) amend article 10 section B of bylaws regarding no majority vote on first vote for SBC president

    (Harold Phillips) all colleges and universities and seminaries be responsible to teach creation science as recorded in Genesis (report to budget committee)

    (James Julian) the SBC charging inflated prices for tools and resources for messages, addresses, etc.; reduce the cost!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Ah! Alcohol makes its way back in the motions and resolutions for the umpteenth year. Everyone knows that the reason we are decreasing in baptisms is because we have too many wine-drinking pastors. :) That darn “cultural liberalism”!

  • Sean Post

    Just changing the course of this thread a bit, but I am bothered by the creation of this new Hall of Faith. The giving of awards for ministry of any kind demonstrates hubris on the part of the party giving the award, that is, they are acting as if they have the ability to discern who has been the most faithful to the ministerial call or who has been simply the best at ‘their’ ministry. It may also reveal pride on the part of the one receiving the award.

    All Christian ministry is the property of Christ Jesus and all involved in ministry are simple stewards of said ministry. I am the pastor of Mt. Vernon Baptist Church and I have been called to fulfill this ministry, but I do not own this ministry, God does. He leads me in this ministry by His Word and by His Spirit. He is in charge of this ministry, not me. Anything good that happens in this ministry and any faithfulness I have in this ministry are because of the Lord. Left to myself to perform this ministry, I would mess it up something terrible! Since He is the head of this ministry (I realize I’ve used the words, ‘this ministry’ a bit too much) how can I claim any award from anyone for it except from the Lord Himself? And, why would I consider giving an award to anyone else for ministerial work and take upon myself the mantle that only Christ can own? This is very man-centered.

    It’s time to stop applauding our efforts because we don’t really know if there is anything to applaud.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Message by David Dockery

    3 John 4
    “no greater joy . . . than to hear my children walking in the truth”

    1. Convictional and Confessional Beliefs
    2. Collaborative and Cooperative Service

    “We need to ask hard questions about regenerate church membership; the Christian faith is not mere moralism; faith in faith; some self-help theory. It is the manifestation of God’s revealed truth in his Holy Word.”

    We a renewed commitment to teach the truth!

    There is a place in the SBC a fear against a commitment to confessional faith. It is a misunderstanding of our baptist heritage to deny a confessional faith.

    “There is no need to construct a false dichotomy between a living faith and a confessional faith.”

    The failure to prioritize the apostle’s call is the source of confusion in Baptist life today.

    We need a renewed commitment to our confessional faith that will not given into the spirit of defeat. Then we will found faithful to walk in the truth.

    We need a SBC characterized by collaborate, compassionate, and cooperative spirit that exhibits loving the truth. We need a renewed spirit of collaborative cooperation. No longer can a culture of homogeneity or programmatic function keep us together.

    We are to serve together as coworkers in the truth. We can and we must cooperate and collaborate together because we trust the same Savior, we have received the same Spirit, we have received a common baptism, promised the same eternal destiny, and one day will enjoy the same new heavens and new earth.

    We find our shared hope in the good news of the gospel itself. A gospel revealed and authenticated in Holy Scripture, focused on Jesus–his substitutionary atonement for our sins and victorious resurrection. The Christian faith stands or falls on this glorious gospel.

    The first generation believe and proclaims the gospel;
    The second generation benefits from the gospel;
    The third generation substitutes for the gospel.

    Much is at stake, including the health of the SBC, and the eternal lostness of individuals. We need both collaboration cooperation and convictional confessionalism.

    Carl F.H. Henry: Our witness to the world will be stronger when the church is united; a cantankerous spirit results in an unnecessary fragmentation . . .

  • http://www.5solas.com Matt Privett

    Reporting from inside the convention hall…

    Dockery’s message was spot on. Unfortunately about half or more of those who had been here for the motions left and are just now creeping back in for more motions.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Presidential Vote Results

    7,196 Total Messengers
    5,856 casting ballot (81.38%)

    Hunt 3,100 52.94%
    Cox 1,286 21.96%
    Willis 962 16.43%
    Wagner 255 4.35%
    Puryear 188 3,21%
    Drake 45 .77%
    20 votes disallowed

    Hunt is new president of the SBC.

  • Bill Formella

    It appears Johnny Hunt has blown everyone away in the first election with 52% of the vote. Over 3,000 votes with Frank Cox getting about 1200. WOW!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Motion Meeting 4

    (Regina Shrock) Equipment for hearing impaired

    (William Lausch?) Candidate nominated, either a picture be shown via video screen or nominee presented on stage at time of nomination

    (Rick Reeder) Ask people to consider offering financial help for his church

    (Wiley Drake) Convention request x-Comm to lead convention to repentance and renewed commitment to holiness and godly living

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    “Blast from the past” meeting (2005) . . .

    http://www.bpnews.net/bpnews.asp?id=21063

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Anecdotal Observation from the P&P research team:

    Messenger Total in 08 Indy: 7,196
    Messenger Total in 07 San Anton: 8,618
    Messenger Total in 06 Greensboro: 8,961
    Messenger Total in 05 Nashville: 11,641

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Patterson Report (SWBTS)

    “We have been napping, but we are waking up.”
    “You will find no wimps at SWBTS . . .”
    Come visit us as vultures meet their disappointment . . .

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Hunt’s campaign commercial from his assistant, Jim Law (sent out several weeks ago):

    “Greetings to you in the wonderful name of Jesus! I want to talk with you of a recent development of which you may already be aware. Many of you know that Pastor Johnny Hunt has been asked numerous times over the past 10-12 years to allow his name to be placed in nomination as President of the Southern Baptist Convention. Even after much encouragement from many of his peers and friends, he has never felt led to do so. In recent days after being asked again and after much prayer and seeking the Lord, he has agreed to allow that to happen at this year’s convention. There are other strong candidates that will be doing the same. However, I believe with all my heart that Dr. Hunt will provide the best leadership for all of us in two specific areas. Those two areas being change and a bright future for us as well as the denomination we all love but for which we are deeply concerned.

    You may say, “Jim, I agree but what can I do?” I want to encourage you to make every effort to be in Indianapolis, IN on June 10-11, 2008 and cast your vote for Dr. Hunt as our next SBC president. The election will be on Tuesday afternoon, June 10th. I also encourage you to bring as many delegates as you are allowed by the Convention to do the same. Finally, would you exercise whatever influence you may have with other Pastors who do not know Pastor Johnny like you do and assure them that a vote for Pastor Johnny will be a vote for a different and bright future? Encourage them to be at the Convention and/or send delegates to represent them.

    We have all been the beneficiary of Dr. Hunt’s investment of time, instruction and encouragement. Now, it is time that we invest in him. I trust you will do your part, my brother. We are counting on you.”

    Looks like it worked! Quite different results than from the SBC Voices online poll:

    http://sbcvoices.com/sbc-president-poll-2008/

  • http://iemissional.com Marty Duren

    Wiley came in the same place in the poll and in real life. Those 20 disallowed votes must have been for Art Rogers.

    “We’ve been napping…,” says President Patterson. That’s almost enough to get out the old quill and ink.

    Almost.

    Thanks for your anectodal figures on recent attendance trends. Looks like it mirrors our cultural influence.

  • Ronk

    Dr. Land has identified the four horseman of the modern apocalypse.
    The last was radical Islamic jihadism.

  • Ronk

    If I were there, I’d be voting for Doug Moulkey for 2nd vp. Great speach.

  • Ronk

    7,242 messengers registered so far.

  • http://founders.org/blog tom ascol

    Tim:

    Great comments. I could just stay in my room and read your blog and probably know more of what is going on than by being here! I am really intrigued by the presidential election. I expected Johnny (“Unite-us”) Hunt to win, but on a second ballot. This makes me wonder about the influence of the blogosphere this year. The spirit here has been great. Those expecting a fight must be disappointed.

  • Bill Formella

    A few people commenting on the SBC Today blog (which endorsed Cox) seem to be insinuating that Ted Traylor misrepresented the CP record of FB Woodstock. That would seem to be a pretty simple thing to verify. Any ideas on what he said that may not have been accurate?

  • Bill Formella

    I guess one of the positives from this is that the 10% CP litmus test doesn’t seem to be catching on. Personally, I would rather see churches get more directly involved in supporting missions where a higher percentage of $ would actually get to the field and the givers have a deeper connection with the missionaries. HMM. Does that mean I’m not a true Southern Baptist?

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Sean Post,

    Sorry for not responding quickly to your post. I was trying to follow the conference schedule with the events as they were unfolding. I, too, share in your concern regarding the “Hall of Faith.” But mind you, we are also the same denomination that erected a statue of Billy Graham at the front of headquarters. I appreciate Billy Graham and all, but even he has fumbled the gospel in his late years.

    Apparently, the Corinthian church wrestled with the same temptation to make a Hall of Faith. The big three, Paul, Cephas, and Apollos, were such superstars in the Corinthian celebrity culture that factions arose between the church over who belong to who.

    The first time this was brought up Paul was quick to say that he was glad that he did not baptize any so that they would not say they were baptized in his name (1 Cor. 1:10-17).

    The second time it was brought up, Paul said that such jealousy and strife was the result of spiritual immaturity (babes who still sucking on milk rather than eating meat). He responds that they are but servants fulfilling the task God had assigned them, but it was *God* who brought the increase (e.g. gave the results). So he concludes that he, Apollos, and Peter “are not anything” (1 Cor. 3:1-9).

    Paul is continually calling them to consider their calling so that would not boast in their calling but boast in the Lord (1 Cor. 1:26-31), that everything they did was for God’s glory (1 Cor. 10:31).

    So with that said, the “Hall of Faith”, in my mind, (1) reflects much of the celebrity culture we have created, (2) reflects much of the immaturity of the Corinthian church, (3) detracts from the glory that belongs solely to Jesus, and (4) confuses who is actually responsible for bringing the increase.

    Perhaps there is no more timely word than from Paul himself who asked the Corinthians:

    “What do you have that you did not receive? If then you received it, why do you boast as if you did not receive it?” (1 Cor. 4:7)

    Then again, it was Jesus who said,

    “So you also, when you have done all that you were commanded, say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done what was our duty” (Luke 17:10)

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Eight Motions Passed

    Two to the 2009 annual meeting.

    A motion by William Sanderson of Hephzibah Baptist Church in Wendell, N.C., asking that Broadway Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas., be declared not to be in friendly cooperation with the SBC. (There were no messengers from the church registered in Indianapolis).

    A motion by Ben Smith of First Baptist Church of Adel, Ga., asking the Executive Committee “study the possibilities and recommend any bylaw changes need[ed] to allow for the week of the convention to also accommodate other events that support the work and mission of Southern Baptist[s].”

    Three to the Executive Committee:

    A motion by Benjamin Cole of Emmanuel Baptist Church of Enid, Okla., requesting that the Executive Committee make a standardized form of reporting for the SBC seminaries in the Book of Reports.

    A motion by Barrett Lampp of Thomasville Road Baptist Church in Tallahassee, Fla., limiting entity trustees to only one term.

    A motion by Jeff Purvis of First Baptist Church in Pevely, Mo., that SBC bylaws be amended to require that people who serve on boards and commission “agree to abstain from drinking alcoholic beverages and using any other recreational drugs,” agree with the BF&M and be a member of a CP-giving church.

    One to LifeWay Christian Resources:

    A motion by Alan Thompson of First Baptist Church Clairemont in San Diego, Calif., asking that the Executive Committee translate the Baptist Faith & Message into the top five languages of the SBC.

    Two Ruled Out of Order:

    A motion by Eric Williams of Long Prairie Baptist Church in Belle Rive, Ill., asking that messengers not allow the HCSB “or any translation that questions the validity of any Scripture passage or verse” to be used in any SBC publication or at the podium of any SBC meeting.

    A motion by Rodney A. Fry of First Baptist Church in Lead Hill, Ark., asking that all seminary Internet classes charge the same for tuition and fees that on-campus students receive.

    Source: http://www.bpnews.net/blog/article.asp?id=158&title=Messengers+approve+action+on+8+motions

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    One positive way of ensuring young Southern Baptists stay out of leadership positions and continue the spiral downhill: erect extra-biblical standards that supersede the sufficiency of Scripture as in the case of Jeff Purvis’ motion regarding alcohol. It’s not the moderationists that will be eliminated, but the abstentionists who refuse to bind the consciences and remove the seats at the table by arbitrary standards. If we are going to go this route, why wasn’t their a motion against mullet hairdo’s in the 80’s? Hair below the ears and the appearance of rebellion certainly was something that should not have been tolerated.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    The Irony of 2006 and 2008 SBC Presidential Elections

    Back in 2006, many of you will remember Time Mag, USA Today, and other news outlets quick to report the influence of SBC bloggers contributing to the election of unknown candidate Frank Page. For instance:

    1. http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1204271,00.html
    2. http://www.usatoday.com/news/religion/2008-06-03-southern-baptists-election_N.htm

    Fast forward to 2008. The SBC blogosphere has changed substantially. In 06, Marty Duren, Steve McCoy, Joe Thorn, Art Rogers, Wade Burleson, and many others were weighing in. For instance, see my compilation of blogposts from 06:
    http://timmybrister.com/2006/06/12/2006-sbc-greensboro-convention-compilation-post/

    None of these men aforementioned are blogging today, at least not regarding SBC issues. Relatively new bloggers have recently joined together to form group blogs, as seen in SBCToday, SBCImpact, SBCWitness and SBCOutpost. One in particular that seemed to be swinging a big stick is the new “Baptist Identity” movement spear-headed by Bart Barber and the SBCToday guys. All of them came out publicly endorsing Frank Cox for president of the SBC. One blogger was confident enough to deem Cox already “the next president of the SBC.”
    http://peterlumpkins.typepad.com/peter_lumpkins/2008/06/frank-cox-an-in.html

    The SBC Voices had Cox dominating the competition, beating Johnny Hunt 340 to 91. By all the press coverage, interviews, blog endorsements, and online polling, it seemed right in the minds of the BI guys and those in the new world of SBC blogging that Frank Cox could not be beaten.

    That is, until this afternoon. Hunt ended up not only winning the presidency, but he did so convincingly–and on the first ballot. The only blogger that I can recall endorsing Johnny Hunt was the lonesome Nathan A. Finn.

    So I suppose there will be no press conference this year where the incoming president will owe a sense of gratitude to SBC bloggers (unless Hunt chooses to credit Nathan for single-handedly having more blog influence than all other SBC bloggers combined). To the contrary, this presidential election was in spite of SBC bloggers.

    Where the lesson in 06 was anecdotal to the rise of blogging in SBC life and the influence found therein, the lesson in 08 is anecdotal to the apparent insignificance of blogging in SBC life. Just because some blogs draw the attention and ear to merit a long stream of comments or appeal to self-attributed notoriety, we should in no sense deceive ourselves equivocating comments into votes. As my friend Steve McCoy said when he shut down the most influential SBC blog (Missional Baptist Blog), our goal should be that our churches are louder than our blogs. In the end, that is the irony of 2008. Hunt has spent his time and energy investing in his church and people, and to his credit, built a network that is broad and deep in the SBC. He may not have had the endorsements online or won the online presidential poll, but in the end, he won the only place where it actually mattered.

    Maybe that should be a lesson for us all who are tempted to submit comments rather than submitting our lives in service to one another. Baptist Identity, Joshua Convergence, Memphis Declaration, and the next fad on the SBC block will not be remembered, but eternity will account for our lives spent in the two things that endure forever: the Word of God and souls of men. “Young leaders” will not be found with those who have the esteem of bloggers or those who comment, but the esteem of unknown saints whose anonymity is a fresh reminder of the kind of life we need to embrace.

    Today, churches and ministers were louder than blogs, and you know, it’s supposed to be that way after all.

  • http://www.5solas.com Matt Privett

    I went into the convention hall this afternoon honestly not knowing who I would vote for. Very reluctantly, I cast my vote with the majority, but only because Hunt was the most known quantity to me and there were aspects of the other lesser-known candidates (at least to me) that concerned me.

    I honestly don’t know how much influence the bloggers really had in 2006. I do know that in 2008 there definitely is a sense of blog-fatigue that has been noted by others as of late. I, for one, welcome that fatigue (at least for a while).

    Timmy, I share your frustration with yet another alcohol amendment. When will Southern Baptists get as fired up about the gospel as they do Budweiser. This coming from a complete tee-totaler who can’t stand the alcohol industry. One can only hope there’s not another resolution on this issue tomorrow morning.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Johnny Hunt on SBC Decline and Young Leaders:

    “We believe that there’s a need for a radical change and radical leadership to turn the tide in our denomination. … We’ve been declining as a denomination. You can’t turn something around until you stop the tide in the direction it’s going.

    Hunt said one of his goals is “being able to inspire the younger generation that’s coming behind me to buy in and then step up to the plate and support” the SBC.

    Source: http://www.bpnews.net/blog/article.asp?id=154&title=Hunt+hopes+to+inspire+younger+generation

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Matt,

    I had several friends texting me regarding who to vote for, and I did not feel like that I could give them an answer. That’s not to say that none of these eight men I appreciate and have respect for, but that I have reservations that would give me pause.

    I am curious to see how Hunt will carry himself as president of the SBC. In years past when he did not hold a position in leadership of the SBC, he was very polemic and antagonistic. I want to believe him when he talks about building bridges, reaching out to young SBCers, being an encourager, etc. It would be great to see something happen where it could be arranged for Hunt to meet with those whom he has written off in the past as a beginning of new things, such as collaboration and cooperation as Dockery so eloquently presented in his challenge.

    The alcohol ordeal is just so lame. The day we want to start addressing real problems in the SBC and stop playing these silly games of motions and resolutions on alcohol would be the beginning of “stopping the tide in the direction it’s going”, to use Hunt’s words.

  • http://www.5solas.com Matt Privett

    I think it was the talk of reaching out to younger SBCers that did it for me, and I know he’s had a discipleship program at his church that people say good things about. This is my first SBC (hard to believe), and it’s not like I didn’t know this before, but it really is eye opening to see the insanely and inordinately high percentage of senior citizens (or close to it) at this thing. And that’s not to say I don’t welcome them. But where are the young people? Home or vacationing because of years (decades) of being told to know their role and shut their mouths.

    And does the SBC repent of anything? I guess we’ll find out tomorrow, but I for one am so tired of hearing about how great we’re doing at everything. Anyway, I’m done ranting and going to bed.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Matt,

    Do pray about the proceedings tomorrow. It is likely that the resolution on regenerate church membership will come out not including the language of repentance nor calling for Convention employees to stay out of the business of local churches who want to pursue integrity in church membership. If that happens, Tom will proceed with his recommendation for an amendment, and others are expected to speak in favor of his amendment.

    The issue of honesty and humility is before us as a convention of churches. I hope that we find ourselves postured and purposed to honor Christ our Head.

  • http://www.5solas.com Matt Privett

    The resolutions are out. No repentance language, nothing about Convention employees.

    There is, however, a resolution on affirming the use of the term “Christmas” in public life. Also one regarding Israel’s 60th anniversary, celebrating growing ethnic diversity, encouraging political engagement, CA’s gay marriage, Planned Parenthood, and a couple more.

  • Bill Formella

    Matt, you ask “Where are the young people?” Well, let’s see. Perhaps they’ve used up all of their conference funds on Ligonier, T4G, Desiring God, Shepherd’s, 9Marks, Founders, etc. I’m really not trying to be mean spirited but, after listening online to several of the messages from the Pastor’s conference, I wouldn’t want to waste time there. Other than to be present to cast a few votes, I think the whole experience would be shallow and unsatisfying.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Matt,

    Thanks for filling us in. For those who want to see what the resolution on regenerate church membership looks like, here it is:

    On Regenerate Church Membership and Church Member Restoration

    WHEREAS, The ideal of a regenerate church membership has long been and remains a cherished Baptist principle, with Article VI of the Baptist Faith and Message describing the church as a “local congregation of baptized believers”; and

    WHEREAS, A New Testament church is composed only of those who have been born again by the Holy Spirit through the preaching of the Word, becoming disciples of Jesus Christ, the local church’s only Lord, by grace through faith (John 3:5, Ephesians 2:8-9); and

    WHEREAS, Local associations, state conventions, and the Southern Baptist Convention compile statistics reported by the churches to make decisions for the future; and

    WHEREAS, The Scriptures admonish us to seek to restore any professed brother or sister in Christ who has strayed from the truth and is in sin (Matthew 18:15-35, Galatians 6:1); now, therefore, be it

    RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Indianapolis, Indiana, June 10-11, 2008, urge churches to maintain a regenerate membership by acknowledging the necessity of spiritual regeneration and Christ’s lordship for all members; and be it further

    RESOLVED, That we humbly urge our churches to maintain accurate membership rolls for the purpose of fostering ministry and accountability among all members of the congregation; and be it finally

    RESOLVED, That we humbly urge the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention and their pastors to implement a plan to minister to, counsel, and restore wayward church members based upon the commands and principles given in Scripture (Matthew 18:15-35; 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15; Galatians 6:1; James 5:19-20).

    Source: http://www.bpnews.net/blog/article.asp?id=165&title=Committee+presents+membership%2Frestoration+resolution

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Tom’s resolution speaks as follows:

    Resolution on Integrity in Church Membership

    Whereas the Baptist Faith and Message states that the Scriptures are “the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and religious opinions should be tried” (Article 1); and

    Whereas life in a local church should be characterized by loving discipline as the Bible teaches in passages like Matthew 18:15-18, 1 Corinthians 5 and Titus 3:10-11; and

    Whereas the 2007 Southern Baptist Convention Annual Church Profiles indicate that there are 16,266,920 members in Southern Baptist churches; and

    Whereas those same profiles indicate that only 6,148,868 of those members attend a primary worship service of their church in a typical week; and

    Whereas the ideal of a regenerate church membership has long been and remains a cherished Baptist principle as described in Article VI of the Baptist Faith and Message; and

    Whereas the significance of believers’ baptism tends to be lost when churches that practice it fail to exercise loving care for all their members; therefore, be it

    RESOLVED that the messengers of the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Indianapolis, Indiana, June 10-11, 2008, urge Southern Baptists to repent of our failure to maintain responsible church membership, and be it further

    RESOLVED that we urge the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention to repent of the widespread failure among us to obey Jesus Christ in the practice of lovingly correcting wayward church members (Matthew 18:15-18), and be it further

    RESOLVED that we plead with pastors and church leaders to lead their churches to study and implement our Lord’s teachings on this essential church practice, and be it further

    RESOLVED that we encourage denominational servants to support and encourage churches that seek to recover and implement our Savior’s teachings on church discipline, especially when such efforts result in the reduction in the number of members that are reported in those churches, and be it finally

    RESOLVED that we commit to pray for our churches as they seek to honor the Lord Jesus Christ through reestablishing integrity to church membership and to the reporting of statistics in the Annual Church Profile.

    Source: http://www.founders.org/blog/2008/04/2008-resolution-on-integrity-in-church.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    For info’s sake, here’s the Yarnell/Barber resolution:

    WHEREAS, The Baptist Faith Message asserts that the Scriptures are “the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and religious opinions should be tried” (Article I); and

    WHEREAS, A New Testament church is composed only of those who have been born again by the Holy Spirit through the preaching of the Word, becoming disciples of Jesus Christ, the local church’s only Lord, by grace through faith (Matthew 18:18-20; John 3:5); and

    WHEREAS, A New Testament church is formed through covenant by a group of Christians intentionally gathering in the name of Jesus Christ and under his lordship (Matthew 18:19-20; Colossians 2:10, 19); and

    WHEREAS, Baptism of only believers by immersion in the Triune name is the only proper means of entering a local New Testament church and is thus the indispensable beginning of regenerate church membership (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 2:41); and

    WHEREAS, Regenerate church membership is preserved by the practice of redemptive church discipline according to our Lord’s command (Matthew 18:15-18, 1 Corinthians 5; Titus 3:10-11); and

    WHEREAS, The Lord’s Supper is to be celebrated in a worthy manner as a memorial of our Lord’s atoning death, providing continuing evidence of regenerate church membership (1 Corinthians 11:23-29); and

    WHEREAS, Regenerate church membership is necessary for the responsible practice of congregational church government (Matthew 18:17; Acts 6:3-4; 15:22); and

    WHEREAS, The local church has been commissioned to make disciples of all nations through proclaiming the Word, by going, baptizing and teaching all things that Christ commanded, thus propagating regenerate church membership through evangelism (Matthew 28:16-20); and

    WHEREAS, The New Testament ideal of regenerate church membership has long been a cherished Baptist principle as described by the Baptist Faith and Message (Article VI); now, therefore, be it

    RESOLVED, That the messengers of the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Indianapolis, Indiana, June 10-11, 2008, humbly urge our beloved churches to renew their commitment to regenerate church membership by acknowledging the necessity of spiritual regeneration and Christ’s lordship for all members of local churches; and be it further

    RESOLVED, That we humbly urge our churches to renew their commitment to the congregation as a covenantal assembly entered only by immersion of those who evidence a credible profession of faith in Christ; and be it further

    RESOLVED, That we humbly urge our churches to renew the practice of redemptive church discipline, reviewing their membership rolls and kindling fraternal kinship and accountability among all members of the congregation; and be it further

    RESOLVED, That we humbly urge our churches to celebrate the Lord’s Supper as a meaningful memorial celebration according to the New Testament, and develop congregants capable of responsible self-governance; and be it finally

    RESOLVED, That we humbly encourage all of our beloved Southern Baptist churches to seek to fulfill the New Testament ideal of regenerate church membership for the glory of God, the edification of His people, and the more effective evangelization of the lost.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    UNBELIEVABLE. The Resolutions Committee stripped out over half of the resolution from either Tom or Yarnell/Barber. Any kind of amendments will require the insertion of numerous paragraphs–paragraphs with the resolutions committed seem none to resolved about. What this resolution by the committee represents is a proverbial hat tip to the debate and as it stands contributes nothing to the cause of integrity in church membership or the call to repentance or the need for recovering our Baptist distinctives–all of which baptist historians and theologians stand in agreement.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Total messenger update: 7,249.

    That is, of course, 0.004% of the 16 million members of the SBC. Because we all know that we are 16 million strong . . .

  • Bill Formella

    Timmy, thanks for your updates. This seems to be THE blog when it comes to “up to the minute” convention news.

    The resolution is disappointing but to be expected. In my nearly 20 years as an SBC member it’s become obvious to me that appearance and reputation are cherished above substance in our convention. Pointing out the obvious and calling ourselves to repentance would sacrifice what we cherish so highly and start the dreaded “whose to blame” questioning.

    The battle is still where it has always been. With real people on the local church level. With that we can be encouraged.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Left out of the Resolutions Committee Resolution on Regenerate Church Membership

    In the “Whereas” portion:

    1. No mention of the damage to Christ’s church by unholy lives of church members
    2. No mention of exactly how many of SBC church members bear no visible evidence of regeneration

    In the “Resolved” portion:

    1. No mentioning of the Annual Church Profile or its statistics
    2. No call to repentance for our failure in this area
    3. No call for denominational servants to stay out of the business of churches seeking to restore integrity in church membership
    4. No call to pray for our churches in this matter

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Dr. Page in prayer over the Convention:

    “we have been haughty, arrogant, and sinful . . . a call to repentance, Lord, is your call to our hearts today . . . we pray for repentance to come into our homes, our churches, and our lives”

    “let us present Christ clearly and beautifully for the world to see”

    Excellent.

    BUT, these things Dr. Page is praying for are precisely the things left out of the resolution on regenerate church membership

  • Bill Formella

    Timmy, did you hear how the last video clip just ended? “Every number has a story.” Unless, of course, that number is 16 million.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Tom Ascol’s planned amendments are as follows:

    RESOLVED that we urge the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention to repent of the any failure among us to live up to our professed commitment to regenerate church membership and any failure to obey Jesus Christ in the practice of lovingly correcting wayward church members (Matthew 18:15-18), and be it further

    RESOLVED that we humbly encourage denominational servants to support and encourage churches that seek to recover and implement our Savior’s teachings on church discipline, even if such efforts result in the reduction in the number of members that are reported in those churches, and be it finally

    Not sure if these amendments or others will be changed due to the weakness of the resolution coming out of the committee

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Bill,

    Yeah, that’s right. That’s where I got the title for my research on regenerate church membership which I also entitled “every number has a story.” Unfortunately, we refuse to tell their stories. Denominational triumphalism leaves no room for stories that don’t fit the program.

  • http://iemissional.com Marty Duren

    Timmy-
    I have to gently disagree. It is completely and thoroughly BELIEVABLE.

    Your thoughts about pre-Greensboro and pre-Indy relating to the influence of blogs was interesting. A not insignificant insight is that all the blogging that took place pre-Greensboro had to do with SBC reform. Frank Page’s election (benefiting from whatever blog weight one chooses to assign) was seen as an outgrowth of a growing discontent with the “anointed annual candidate” and the “CP resurrection” being driven by the State execs and the Executive Committee.

    This year, this is no reform movement to speak of. The vast majority of the vocal ones have long since given up trying to reform the SBC. The singular place where I disagree with Steve McCoy is that the SBC won’t be changed as our churches change–it will be abandoned. (Well, it will not be changed for the better.) The reason blogs like SBC Today, Peter Lumpkins, et al, do not have the weight needed for change is because they are not offering any. Nobody is motivated by passion to keep the status quo.

    Even the Church Membership resolution (and I would have voted for Tom’s each year including this one) speaks much more to how near we are to the end of denominational existence than a hope for renewal. Who could have imagined a baptist denom having to go on record as to what it means to be a church member? And this after 25 years of resurging? It tells a tale that we have to continually define and redefine who we are to smaller and smaller gatherings each year, while not a single resolution thus far (that I’ve read) has anything to do with positively impacting culture, building bridges to those in need of Christ or, of course, repentance.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Resolutions Approved from the Resolutions Committee

    1. A resolution “On Celebrating the Growing Ethnic Diversity of the Southern Baptist Convention.”

    The resolution says messengers “express our appreciation to those entities currently seeking to reflect a balanced representation of our ethnic diversity in denominational service” and that “we encourage all entities of the Southern Baptist Convention to strive toward a balanced representation of our ethnic diversity.” The resolution concludes by encouraging “our president and all committees to work with state convention and local associations to identity ethnic leadership” from cooperating SBC churches “to serve on boards, committees, and programs” of the SBC.

    2. A resolution “In Celebration of Israel’s 60th Anniversary.”

    The resolution says messengers “join in prayer for the peace of Jerusalem (Psalm 122:6-7), calling upon world leaders to renounce the growing tide of anti-Semitism” and that “Southern Baptists express our appreciation and pledge our prayers for Israel, the birthplace of our Lord and a bastion of democracy in the Middle East.”

    3. A resolution “On Affirming the Use of the Term ‘Christmas’ in Public Life.”

    The resolution says secularism “is a pervasive and aggressive movement” and it denounces efforts by “the American Civil Liberties Union, People for the American Way, and many others” in trying to “remove references to God and Jesus Christ” from the public square. The resolution “encourages believers to be aware of businesses, schools, and all other public institutions in their areas that are removing Christmas as the official designation of the season and to use their influence to restore Christmas to its proper place in the culture.”

    4. A resolution “On Political Engagement.”

    The resolution urges “all Southern Baptists to participate in the 40/40 Prayer Vigil” being promoted by the North American Mission Board and the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission. The 40/40 emphasis calls on Southern Baptists to pray for “spiritual revival and national renewal” between Sept. 24 and Nov. 2.

    The resolution encourages “our churches regularly to teach and preach biblical truth on moral issues and to urge their members to vote according to their believes, convictions, and values.” The resolution also asks all Christians “and particularly those in leadership positions” to “prayerfully seek God’s mind and will and strongly to consider the potential problems of politicizing the church and the pulpit before endorsing candidates.”

    5. A resolution “On the California Supreme Court Decision to Allow Same-Sex Marriage.”

    The resolution supports a proposed constitutional marriage amendment and states that messengers “wholeheartedly support the people in California who have worked tirelessly to place the referendum on the ballot.” The resolution calls on Southern Baptists and believers everywhere “to pray for the people of California.” It also calls on passage and ratification of a federal marriage amendment. The resolution states that the Bible speaks clearly that marriage is between one man and one woman in passages such as Matthew 19:4-6.

    6. A resolution “On Planned Parenthood.”

    The resolution notes that Planned Parenthood is the nation’s largest abortion provider and “has launched a massive campaign to mobilize voters this year, planning to raise at least $10 million.” It says messengers “descry the immoral action of Planned Parenthood clinics across America.” Further, the resolution says messengers “encourage the evaluation of candidates for elected office based on their affiliation with Planned Parenthood.”

    7. A resolution “In Recognition of the Centennial of Royal Ambassadors.”

    The resolution says RAs has educated “at least 2 million boys in biblical missionary principles” and served to win “tens of thousands to faith in Christ.” It says messengers “recognize the historic milestone achieved by the Royal Ambassador organization and give thanks to God for past leaders whose vision and magnificent efforts have led to such long-lasting results.”

    Source: http://www.bpnews.net/blog/article.asp?id=166&title=Committee+proposes+9+resolutions

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Darrell Orman, speaking of the blending of the resolutions on regenerate church membership, asked,

    “Will the real mother let the resolution live?”

  • Bill Formella

    Timmy, that’s just typical SBC pulpit manipluation tactics. Demonize the dissenters before the debate even starts.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Resolution #6: Resolution on regenerate church membership (presented by Kevin Smith of Louisville, KY)

    Mic 6 Malcolm Yarnell:
    Motion to amend: second whereas, which says:

    WHEREAS, A New Testament church is composed only of those who have been born again by the Holy Spirit through the preaching of the Word, becoming disciples of Jesus Christ, the local church’s only Lord, by grace through faith (John 3:5, Ephesians 2:8-9); and

    INSERTION: “which church practices believer’s baptism by immersion, the Lord’s Supper, and church discipline”

  • Ronk

    It’s nice to see Dr. Yarnell fighting working for the resolution this year. I am glad that this does not encroach on autonomy!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Change of heart? Yeah, the autonomy argument isn’t going to fly two years in a row.

  • Ronk

    friendly gesture?
    Church discipline as an ordinance of the church? When does a command of Christ become one that we can disregard?

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Committee’s Response: we are afraid that adding believer’s baptism and Lord’s Supper and church discipline, the practice of church discipline will be elevated to the level of church ordinance

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    It appears that the committee is, as Orman tacitly stated, is to “just say enough”. A minimalist mindset works well for marketing strategies, but not fidelity to Scriptures.

    Minimalism leads to nominalism.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Yarnell amendment passes.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Mic 11 Tom Ascol:

    Motion to amend: after third whereas, add two more whereas statements . . .

    Whereas the 2007 Southern Baptist Convention Annual Church Profiles indicate that there are 16,266,920 members in Southern Baptist churches; and

    Whereas those same profiles indicate that only 6,148,868 of those members attend a primary worship service of their church in a typical week; and

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Ascol, continuing . . .

    Above first resolved, additional resolve:

    RESOLVED that we urge the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention to repent of the any failure among us to live up to our professed commitment to regenerate church membership and any failure to obey Jesus Christ in the practice of lovingly correcting wayward church members (Matthew 18:15-18), and be it further

    Final resolve after last printed resolve:

    RESOLVED that we humbly encourage denominational servants to support and encourage churches that seek to recover and implement our Savior’s teachings on church discipline, even if such efforts result in the reduction in the number of members that are reported in those churches, and be it finally

  • http://iemissional.com Marty Duren

    Timmy you type like a lifelong secretary on speed. Amazing.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Tom speaking to his amendment:

    Last year the convention passed a resolution on the legitimacy on repentance; surely if we need to repent over anything, we need to repent how we have failed to keep biblical standards to church membership

    Dockery interviewed last week: ““We need to repent of our lack of concern for biblical faithfulness in our concern and care for church members. We need to repent of the way the way we often allow people to join local churches without stressing the covenantal aspect of membership. We need to repent of the fact that we have largely neglected any aspect of church discipline that would have helped us begin to address some of these matters.””

    Surely we can say amen to Dr. Dockery’s statements on repentance

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Committee’s Response:

    “we are appreciate your heart on the purity of the church . . . we carefully selected the language specifically to address these issues; regarding repentance, the reason we did not go as strongly as you wish, because out of our committee, we have five pastors, all have exercised oversight and conscientiousness in maintaining church membership . . . it was not proper to ask our convention to repent when there are churches who are practicing regenerate church membership; further, we would not like to rewrite this resolution on the convention floor; we literally bringing a baby from four DNA strains, we are asking that you let the baby live”

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Bill Ascol:

    “This is a call for corporate repentance. We have in years past called for corporate repentance on issues not all of us are guilty of. We have by an large failed to practice integrity in church membership. Dagg, when discipline leaves the church, Christ goes with it. We appreciate the convention wanting to save the baby; I just want the baby to look like a Baptist.”

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Tom Ascol’s amendment passes!

    There is hope.

  • http://iemissional.com Marty Duren

    GO TOM!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Resolution on Regenerate Church Membership, as stated with the two amendments, passes.

    Looks like the Resolution Committee wasted a lot of time stripping away things they could not keep out.

  • http://www.5solas.com Matt Privett

    Praise the Lord!!!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Mohler: “I am glad that I am a part of a denomination that something that is discussing something as important and central as regenerate church membership.”

    Years of discussion: 3
    Years of passage: 1

    It’s a start. :)

  • Bill Formella

    Praise the Lord! Thank you Tom and everyone else that has been fighting for this for years. Now if we can just get the news to the average Southern Baptist in the pew that is likely to never hear anything about this. From my experience, even when members of the worst offending mega churches hear of this resolution, they see the need for it.

    And now Al Mohler.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Having now a Convention consensus on the matter, may we all pray for churches and pastors to implement the hard work of practicing regenerate church membership. Remember that no resolution is binding on the churches, but it can be binding on our hearts. May the conversation not end, but begin to translate into action, so that, five years from now, we will not look back and see that it was just a resolution–nothing more, nothing less.

  • Bill Formella

    Tom and Bill Ascol disciplined “the baby” and it still lived. Now if we’ll just trust God to do the same in our churches.

  • http://www.reformingdad.blogspot.com John Jordan

    I’m sitting here in the conventon center. I’m so excited about this resolution passing with the admendments. There were quite a few that voted in opposition to Tom’s amendment. I wasn’t sure if it had passed or not until Dr. Page said so.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    John,

    Thanks for sharing your perspective from the convention floor. I have talked to a few other friends on the floor as well. The opposition to regenerate church membership is slowly running out of unbiblical answers. I’m glad to see more people this year recognizing the importance of this cardinal distinctive of Baptist identity.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    An illuminating commentary from Ben Wright, of Capitol Hill Baptist Church:

    http://paleoevangelical.blogspot.com/2008/06/somewhere-between-jesus-and-john-wayne.html

    Two paragraph for starters:

    “So the SBC is in a precarious position. The preaching put on display is counter-productive to the principles of the Resurgence. It’s not that anyone denies the authority, inerrancy, or sufficiency of Scripture. It’s not that anyone would explicitly reject expository preaching. The problem is that the prevailing majority of the preaching that’s on display reduces biblical authority to (at best) a trite series of mottos and (at worst) a jumping-off point for man-centered theology or a comedy routine.

    Just as I’ve argued that fundamentalists who profess allegiance to Scripture are hypocrites when they tolerate (and even elevate) preaching that undermines it, so is a fundamentalistic SBC Conservative Resurgence that tolerates what we’ve seen and heard this week.”

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Wes Kenney, at SBCToday,

    “It was a remarkable moment, in that the convention overturned the will of the committee in order to add Dr. Ascol’s language. I was pleased to support the amendment, and proud to be a part of this historic moment.”

    Source: http://sbctoday.com/2008/06/11/resolution-unity/

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Steve Weaver, on his blog,

    “This is a great day for Southern Baptists. A hybrid resolution compiled from four submitted motions was overwhelmingly adopted today by the messengers of the SBC. This resolution contained ammendments from the floor by Drs. Ascol and Yarnell which greatly strengthened it.”

    Source: http://pastorsteveweaver.wordpress.com/2008/06/11/resolution-on-regenerate-church-membership/

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    From Baptist Press:

    “The amendment was proposed by Tom Ascol, a messenger from Grace Baptist Church in Cape Coral, Fla. His amendment passed by roughly 60 percent of messengers, and the final amended version of the resolution passed nearly unanimously.”

    Source: http://www.bpnews.net/blog/article.asp?id=168&title=Messengers+pass+amended+membership+resolution+%2D%2D+updated

  • ABClay

    Man I got to get me one of those Spurgeon Bobbleheads.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Justin Childers, on his blog:

    “I can remember watching the SBC 3 years ago where this same resolution was denied. This is a fantastic day in the life of the SBC.”

    Source: http://justinchilders.blogspot.com/2008/06/sbc-calls-for-repentance.html

  • http://www.hereiblog.com johnMark

    Timmy,

    John Jordan, above, just called to alert me to the membership resolution passing.

    Wonderful news!

    Mark

    p.s. Marty is right about your typing speed. :)

  • Jason

    I am very happy that the resolution (with amendments) passed. The resolution coming to the floor was weak and basically an anemic version of all the resolutions on this issue. I had to laugh a little that Dr. Yarnell wanted to get his landmarkist statement into the resolution, but it’s ok. The statement on repentance was indispensable, IMO.

    I have to admit I am disappointed that Johnny Hunt won the presidency. Now, I am under no delusions of the influence of the president, but I had to shake my head as I heard him mentioned as a “uniter” and one who wants to reach out to the young leaders. He has never been one to build bridges. In fact, didn’t he start a conference to counter the “building bridges” conference? Electing Johnny Hunt is not a vote for change, it’s a vote for the old power structure that handpicked presidents for 20 years. It is the status quo…or actually a backward tick since the election of Frank Page was a step toward change.
    Sadly, people voted for Hunt because they know his name…period.

    Well, I guess there are positives and negatives from this SBC. Now, let’s see if any of the power structure megachurches actually implement church discipline and responsible reporting of numbers based on the belief of regenerate church membership. I’m not holding my breath.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    johnMark and Marty,

    Don’t ask me why, but when I was in the sixth grade, I taught myself typing by using the World Book Encyclopedia. I typed entire entries, sometimes for 4-6 hours a day. Only God knew that it would end up being a profitable exercise!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jason,

    I understand your disappointment, as if anyone, I am most familiar with all the statements (attacks?) Hunt has made against people in the SBC, particular in the Reformed community (as seen in my PDF documentation). Nevertheless, I am hopeful that he will seize this opportunity to change directions in his approach and handling of his convictions.

    Regarding his influence on young leaders, that remains to be seen. I personally do not know of any friends who look to Hunt as a role model or leader, but then again, I am nowhere near Liberty University and haven’t attended a Timothy-Barnabas conference in over five years (back then, they weren’t giving away Hummers either, though I did win an old antique end table one time).

    Truth be known, those who young leaders are looking up to are peripherally connected to the SBC, and some without. Driscoll, Keller, Mahaney, Piper, etc. are not SBC, though they dominate the iPod’s of young Southern Baptists. Men like Darrin Patrick, JD Greear, Daniel Montgomery, and others are nominally affiliated in SBC life (I may be wrong here). My four years of experience at out largest seminary gives me no remembrance of anyone looking to SBC mega church pastors as heroes, nor are they well-connected with them. Instead, they are connected with affinity-based networks like Founders, IX Marks, and Acts 29–and are planning to invest their lives in channels outside the SBC bureaucracy.

  • Bill Formella

    Jason, I believe one of the keys to seeing churches actually implement this is for faithful membership to hear of it and show their pastor they are in support of it. As I said earlier, the people I have talked to from churches among the biggest offenders think this resolution is needed. Sadly, as with all the “inner workings” of the SBC, I fear the average active member will hear nothing of it.

  • Chris

    Timmy,

    Do you have the final copy of the church membership resolution as it was passed? I was trying to piece it together from the amendments listed, but think I got it mixed up.

    Thanks for all your work!!!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    I think it is okay for me to mention this, but I talked to Tom about half an hour ago, and he stated that minister after minister came up to him, some with tears in their eyes, saying that this was the only reason why they came this year. Others told him that, in their next business meeting, they will be using this resolution as a catalyst in the process of pursuing regenerate church membership. If 5% of our churches began doing this, would that not be a great start?

  • Jason

    Totally true.

    Both I and the Music Pastor at my church are young (I graduated from Southern in 2005) and we were talking yesterday afternoon about that exact issue – does any young leader we know look to Hunt as a role model?

    The answer was “no!”

    Now, I am not attacking Hunt. I am sure he is a man who loves the Lord and loves His church. But to think that he is one that young leaders look to is simply naive.

    Of course there are always the guys who desire to be in the SBC power structure and will thus seek to emulate Hunt and others like him. (We learned who a few of those guys were during the Hunt/Founders/Caners issues a few years back.) But the guys I look to as examples are more “fringe” in the SBC (they are not inside the power structure)…guys like Tom Ascol and Mark Dever…and the guys I listen to are in the same boat but most of them are not SBC at all.

    I think young leaders realize something the older leaders do not…..God doesn’t need the SBC, and the SBC isn’t the greatest thing going. I love the SBC. I am not going to leave the SBC. But I also know that we need to repent of our pride for being “THE SBC”.

    Jason

    Timmy, you and I have common friends from Southern. In fact we had dinner one night at a Cracker Barrel when Brad Hughes brought you a suit. Do you remember that?

  • Jason

    Bill,

    It’s true that many people will have no idea about this issue. Most people have no idea the SBC met this week…and many people in my church do not even know the SBC meets at all.

    My hope is that pastors feel the weight of conviction regarding obedience in this area. If 5% (as Timmy mentioned) implement this…then this has been a great start!

    My home church is a large church and 2 years ago I was talking with the pastor of that church when we were at the SBC about church discipline and regenerate church membership. His statement was that he sees it in the Bible, but the church is simply too big to implement that.
    I pray that this is not the mindset of most large church pastors.

    It is hard…but faithfulness is not an easy call.
    It’s much easier to seek to be a big church than it is to seek to be a healthy, faithful church.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Chris,

    I could patch it together myself, but I fear that it would not be as the committed formulated it. So, while it is not official, it would look something like this:

    On Regenerate Church Membership and Church Member Restoration

    WHEREAS, The ideal of a regenerate church membership has long been and remains a cherished Baptist principle, with Article VI of the Baptist Faith and Message describing the church as a “local congregation of baptized believers”; and

    WHEREAS, A New Testament church is composed only of those who have been born again by the Holy Spirit through the preaching of the Word, becoming disciples of Jesus Christ, the local church’s only Lord, by grace through faith which church practices believer’s baptism by immersion, the Lord’s Supper, and church discipline”
    (John 3:5, Ephesians 2:8-9); and

    WHEREAS, Local associations, state conventions, and the Southern Baptist Convention compile statistics reported by the churches to make decisions for the future; and

    WHEREAS, The Scriptures admonish us to seek to restore any professed brother or sister in Christ who has strayed from the truth and is in sin (Matthew 18:15-35, Galatians 6:1); now, therefore, be it

    RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Indianapolis, Indiana, June 10-11, 2008, urge churches to maintain a regenerate membership by acknowledging the necessity of spiritual regeneration and Christ’s lordship for all members; and be it further

    RESOLVED that we urge the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention to repent of the any failure among us to live up to our professed commitment to regenerate church membership and any failure to obey Jesus Christ in the practice of lovingly correcting wayward church members (Matthew 18:15-18), and be it further

    RESOLVED, That we humbly urge our churches to maintain accurate membership rolls for the purpose of fostering ministry and accountability among all members of the congregation; and be it further

    RESOLVED, That we humbly urge the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention and their pastors to implement a plan to minister to, counsel, and restore wayward church members based upon the commands and principles given in Scripture (Matthew 18:15-35; 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15; Galatians 6:1; James 5:19-20), and be it finally

    RESOLVED that we humbly encourage denominational servants to support and encourage churches that seek to recover and implement our Savior’s teachings on church discipline, even if such efforts result in the reduction in the number of members that are reported in those churches.

    Again, this is not official; just my insertions of the amendments of Yarnell and Ascol as passed by the Convention.

  • http://downshoredrift.com Alan Cross

    Outstanding coverage of the resolution, Timmy. I am VERY glad that this passed. I linked to you here and pulled several comments out of this comment stream. Thanks for your coverage.

  • http://dismaldeacon.blogspot.com/ Dismal Deacon

    This is great news from a far country! My pastor (in Indy) is planning to bring this up to our deacon body very soon. He has already been laying the groundwork for it.

    He told me the Ascol vote was close and he was not sure it had passed.

    DD

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Speaking of the resolution on regenerate church membership, it should be noted that now President Johnny Hunt also has a unique opportunity to model the renewed commitment to regenerate church membership at FBC Woodstock (64% of their membership is “inactive”, according to 2006 ACP). I believe, should he and the leadership there, begin to work towards a more faithful picture of a NT church, then such an example would inspire many other churches and pastors to follow. Hunt signed with an endorsement for the Yarnell/Barber resolution, so maybe this is a step in the right direction.

  • Jason

    Alan,

    I just read your blog post that you mention above. Good word.

    Do you really believe there will be an alternative Pastor’s Conference? Who will be planning such a thing?

    Jason

  • Pingback: SBC Regenerate Membership Resolution Passes | Said at Southern Seminary

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    From Alan Cross, blogging on Al Gilbert’s message (which I unfortunately missed):

    “Is the stewardship of this message a priority? Our baptisms are falling. We are not only not winning the world to Christ, but we are not reaching our own sons and daughters. Our organizations have erected bureaucratic barriers that keep us from proclaiming the message of Christ. We have been propping up dead horses and showing them off to other people. We are now serving the organization instead of the organization serving the mission. Could it be that if we would do a death check while getting the reports from the doctors, that we must radically reorganize the convention if we are to reach the world for Christ.

    We must prioritize our money and our resources to see the world come to Christ. Do we need to reprioritize our money? In 2005-06 our churches gave 10.4 billion dollars. The total missions expenditure was 1.2 billion dollars. The CP total was 500 million. Should we be asking how we can be more efficient and effective so that churches would want to give more to the CP. The states keep more than 50% of CP money. Can we defend our bureaucracy to the next generation?

    Why are we spending as much money on Southen states that have thousands of churches and we are not spending the money to reach the masses of lost people all over the world? Is this good stewardship? We needed the Conservative Resurgence in the past to protect the mysteries of God, but we now need a Great Commission Resurgence. We cannot continue to do business as usual. We are servants of Christ and we are stewards of the mysteries of God. Christ is Master and Lord and He is the Captain of this ship. May God give us an overwhelming sense of stewardship to fulfill the task that has been entrusted to us – to see the nations come to Christ.”

    Source: http://www.downshoredrift.com/downshoredrift/2008/06/al-gilberts-con.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    I have been beating the drum of better stewardship and accountability with the CP and overall budget of the SBC since last year.

    On the Fleecing of the Cooperating Program, check out:

    http://timmybrister.com/2007/10/05/the-fleecing-of-the-sbc/

    On the state convention allocation of CP giving, check out:

    http://timmybrister.com/2007/11/30/2007-sbc-state-convention-analysis/

    Bottom line: In annual meetings in the past, we have emphasized the importance of cooperation and giving to the CP. I think it is time that we emphasize the importance of stewardship that reflects kingdom priorities, not bureaucratic redundancies.

  • http://www.lamentations322.blogspot.com Jason M.

    I have been preaching about regenerate church membership and leading our deacon body to back a plan to restore integrity to our church membership rolls since I began pastoring almost 4 years ago.

    I first met stiff opposition, however, the opposition is slowly coming to my point of view because they see this as a biblical issue. We have finally made the last steps to move many on our membership rolls to inactive. After this step, my plan is to introduce a by-law change to permanently remove inactive members from the rolls after taking biblical steps towards reconciliation and restoration.

    I still have some opposition, but hopefully bringing this resolution to the next deacon meeting might convince the opposition to reconsider.

    I will say it is a sad day though when members of the church will listen to the convention but not their own pastors.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Ascol, reflecting on the resolution coming out of the committee:

    “While I appreciate the committee’s work on bringing something before the convention, I was disappointed that significant language was excluded from their report. Bart Barber and Malcolm Yarnell shared my disappointment. There were no clear statements baptism, Lord’s Supper, discipline or repentance. In addition, there was no clear indication as to why such a resolution was necessary and nothing about denominational servants encouraging churches who try to implement changes in practicing regenerate church membership and church discipline.”

    Hear his account of this morning’s events at the source.

    Source: http://www.founders.org/blog/2008/06/sbc-indianapolis-3-resolution-passes.html

  • http://dismaldeacon.blogspot.com/ Dismal Deacon

    Is there a site where you can find stats on individual churches? ACP

    DD

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    DD,

    Yes, but it it is not available to the public.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jason M.,

    Thanks for sharing your work regarding regenerate church membership. We need more testimonies and reports from pastors. I know it is encouraging to others wrestling with whether to do the hard work.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    More Hunt on Younger Generation

    Hunt also stressed the need to reach out to the younger generation. “They are not our problem. They are our future,” he said.

    Noting he has been connecting with younger pastors over the past 15 years through personal contacts and a ministry to reach younger pastors sponsored by his church, Hunt said: “I connect with the younger generation. I think we will see a number of them come back to the convention.

    “I am going to make myself available (to the younger generation) and I am going to hear their hearts,” he pledged.

    “I hope to be a conciliator for the common cause of making His name famous,” Hunt added.

    (and in conclusion)

    In his closing remarks, Hunt acknowledged that everyone does not have to agree with him theologically. Hunt said he hopes to show there is room “under the Southern Baptist umbrella” to those with the passion to take the gospel “down the street and around the world.”

    “Maybe God’s gotten Southern Baptists’ attention that we’d better join hands and do what (God’s called us) to do in the time we have.”

    Source: http://www.baptiststandard.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=8093&Itemid=53

  • Pingback: Promising news from the 2008 SBC Annual Meeting « The Reformed Family Man

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    From Jordan Rouden, on his blog:

    “This is a great day and a historic event. Regenerate church membership has been a staple of historic Baptist practice not to mention a deeply biblical doctrine. However, it is truly a sad thing when there are still many pastors and messengers who voted against it.”

    Source:
    http://jrouden.wordpress.com/2008/06/11/promising-news-from-the-2008-sbc-annual-meeting/

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    From Kelly Randolph, on his blog:

    “I just read that the SBC has passed a resolution on integrity in church membership. Hallelujah! . . . We have been a denomination in denial over the true condition of our membership. This resolution should be a step toward waking us up from our sleep on this issue. Thank God for the tenacity of Tom Ascol. He kept presenting his resolution year after year. Finally, the convention actually got to hear a resolution on this issue and passed it with a substantial majority. This could be a big change moment for the SBC.”

    Source: http://www.ecclesiophilist.com/2008/06/big-change-moment-for-sbc.html

  • Rusty

    Mr. Brister, an honest question….why do we see the passing of this resolution as such a big change? Because it has not passed in the past or what? Also, I didn’t hear much about Voddie Baucham this year, is he on the out’s with sbc folks? I think his message over the last several years is the real issue within sbc life and if the family and discipleship of our children does not become a major focus we can forget the sbc, it will grow older and older until it passes on. Also, thanks for the convetion updates your site and your work has been wonderful….thanks

  • Wayne Roberts

    With all of the talk of how historical it is for Barrack Obama to be a legitimate presidential candidate let’s really be historical. I suggest Voddie Baucham and Eric Redmond as President and 1st VP (or the other way around) of the SBC next year. I realize that there will probably be a push for Dr. Mohler next year to be president (how did that conflict of interest resolution turn out), so maybe Dr. Mohler, Eric Redmond and Voddie Baucham as president, 1st vp and 2nd vp? I know dreaming…

  • http://www.powerofchange.org/blog Reid

    Blessing to you Timmy, keep fighting the good fight and steer clear from the useless ones.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Official Version on Resolution on Church Membership
    (italicized versions are amendments)

    WHEREAS, The ideal of a regenerate church membership has long been and remains a cherished Baptist principle, with Article VI of the Baptist Faith and Message describing the church as a “local congregation of baptized believers”; and

    WHEREAS, A New Testament church is composed only of those who have been born again by the Holy Spirit through the preaching of the Word, becoming disciples of Jesus Christ, the local church’s only Lord, by grace through faith (John 3:5; Ephesians 2:8-9), which church practices believers’ only baptism by immersion (Matthew 28:16-20), and the Lord’s supper (Matthew 26:26-30); and

    WHEREAS, Local associations, state conventions, and the Southern Baptist Convention compile statistics reported by the churches to make decisions for the future; and

    WHEREAS, the 2007 Southern Baptist Convention annual Church Profiles indicate that there are 16,266,920 members in Southern Baptist churches; and

    WHEREAS, Those same profiles indicate that only 6,148,868 of those members attend a primary worship service of their church in a typical week; and

    WHEREAS, The Scriptures admonish us to exercise church discipline as we seek to restore any professed brother or sister in Christ who has strayed from the truth and is in sin (Matthew 18:15-35; Galatians 6:1); and now, therefore, be it

    RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Indianapolis, Indiana, June 10-11, 2008, urge churches to maintain a regenerate membership by acknowledging the necessity of spiritual regeneration and Christ’s lordship for all members; and be it further

    RESOLVED, That we humbly urge our churches to maintain accurate membership rolls for the purpose of fostering ministry and accountability among all members of the congregation; and be it further

    RESOLVED, That we urge the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention to repent of the failure among us to live up to our professed commitment to regenerate church membership and any failure to obey Jesus Christ in the practice of lovingly correcting wayward church members (Matthew 18:15-18); and be it further

    RESOLVED, That we humbly encourage denominational servants to support and encourage churches that seek to recover and implement our Savior’s teachings on church discipline, even if such efforts result in the reduction in the number of members that are reported in those churches, and be it finally

    RESOLVED, That we humbly urge the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention and their pastors to implement a plan to minister to, counsel, and restore wayward church members based upon the commands and principles given in Scripture (Matthew 18:15-35; 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15; Galatians 6:1; James 5:19-20).

    Source: http://www.bpnews.net/blog/article.asp?id=176&title=Complete+text+of+amended+membership+resolution

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Merry Christmas, Israel

    A great title to Baptist Standard’s coverage of the resolutions.

    Source: http://www.baptiststandard.com/index.php?option=com_myblog&show=Merry-Christmas-Israel.html&Itemid=114

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Baptist Churches Told to Repent

    “Southern Baptist churches should repent of keeping inflated membership roles and failing “in the practice of lovingly correcting wayward church members.”

    That’s according to a resolution approved this morning by representatives of what — at least according to inflated membership numbers — is the nation’s largest Protestant denomination.”

    The Louisville Courier Journal (not exactly the friendliest newspaper) on the resolution on regenerate church membership.

    Source: http://www.courier-journal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080611/NEWS01/80611020

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Scott Slayton, on his blog:

    “I think that this resolution, even though it is non binding, was a step in the right direction. This gives pastors more leverage to discuss these issues in their local church without sounding like they are nuts. Most people in our pews have not thought deeply about these issues because they have not had pastors who talked about them. This resolution gives us an opportunity to talk about it with the weight of the Convention behind them.

    I encourage you to read Tom Ascol’s account of the discussion and the text of his amendment. I am very thankful that he has taken the lead in getting this resolution passed and this discussion on the table. ”

    Source: http://www.scottslayton.net/?p=99

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Michael deBusk, on his blog:

    “At the meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention in Indianapolis, messengers approved a resolution calling on churches to maintain integrity in church membership. Though previous conventions have approved resolutions pertaining to church membership, this one was both unique and historic in its scope and tone. It both laments the state of church membership across the convention and exhorts churches to be diligent in their efforts to recover regenerate church membership.

    Both the lament over the unrealized ideal of regenerate membership and the exhortation to strive in practicing it have deep roots in Baptist life . . .”

    Source: http://michaeljdebusk.blogspot.com/2008/06/sbc-resolution-on-regenerate-church.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Matt Privett, on his blog:

    “The moment for which I desired to drive up to Indianapolis for the 2008 Southern Baptist Convention Annual Meeting arrived this morning with the introduction of resolutions. . . . I pray that Resolution No. 6 is the Apollo 11, “The Eagle has landed” moment for regenerate church membership in the Southern Baptist Convention. As a longtime skeptic of the denomination of which I am a member, I pray and will work in my own church to see that membership in a local assembly of believers is taken seriously and that church discipline is done to the glory of God. Should Southern Baptists take hold of this it could transform our churches and give new life, so to speak, to this denomination. I’ll believe it when I see it, but God has done bigger and more impressive things than send revival to the SBC. I’m optimistic, and that’s saying something. If this was one small step, who knows what one giant leap might hold?”

    Source: http://www.5solas.com/?p=126

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Terry Delaney, on Said at Southern blog:

    “The SBC has overwhelmingly passed an amended resolution regarding regenerate church membership. Baptist Press updated their article this morning at 9:30. Read it here. Most importantly, the amended resolution has a call for repentance. Please pray that all the churches in the SBC now take this resolution seriously.”

    Source: http://saidatsouthern.com/amended-membership-resolution-passes/

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jake Porter, on his blog:

    “For several years now, Tom Ascol has sought the passage of a resolution calling for Southern Baptists to just be honest about reality, repent for their failures, and set out to obey Christ. The reality that needed to be admitted is that, while we boast the largest membership of any Protestant denomination in the US (16+ million people), the sad reality is that the vast majority of those “members” don’t even show up for worship on Sunday (the denomination says 6 million on a Sunday, but I know that number is given “ministerially speaking”). For a people who were founded on the principle of regenerate church membership, this is a serious problem.

    [ . . .] It was surreal. After all that discussion, there was a vote, a short round of applause, and it was over. Yeah, I cried. Well, “cried” may be too strong. My eyes got watery and one, maybe two tears had their way. I mean, I couldn’t “cry” much because I had coach Don Price with me, a deacon from our church and the school district’s athletic director. After the vote, I was able to shake Dr. Ascol’s hand and thank him for his faithfulness and leadership on the issue. I teared up again doing that.

    [ . . .] Southern Baptists, do you understand what we said today? We said that we have sinned. We’ve elevated numbers above integrity, and that was wrong. We’ve ignored direct commands of our King. And we have called our churches to REPENTANCE, to a change of direction. That means that next year, instead of lamenting a decline in the total number of SBC church members, we need to CELEBRATE it. Let’s pray that there is a “Great Commission Resurgence,” as so many have called for these last days. Let’s pray that baptisms go up, up, up, and that – at least for a few years – total membership goes down, down, down.”

    Source: http://jakeporter.wordpress.com/2008/06/11/church-discipline-affirmed-how-the-sbc-made-me-cry/

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Dr. Jim Hamilton, prof at SBTS, on his blog:

    “Hallelujah! The account of this resolution and these amendments to it is cause for rejoicing. . . . Now for the hard work of putting the resolution into practice where we are. May the Lord cause his word to prosper in our churches!”

    Source: http://jimhamilton.wordpress.com/2008/06/11/a-step-in-the-right-direction-the-sbc-resolves-to-repent-and-tell-the-truth-regarding-its-members/

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Bob Cleveland, on his blog:

    “Two years in a row, Tom Ascol’s motion was shot down. By mostly pastors. The inescapable conclusion is that they DID NOT WANT to deal with it. This year, the motion came forth with0ut the call for repentance. It was added by amendment, but in a rather low-key sterile way. The convention does not seem to want to face the fact of what Dr. Patterson admitted was “Lying to ourselves and lying to the public” … by including people in our membership numbers who no longer have any involvement in our churches.”

    Source: http://mightyfowl.blogspot.com/2008/06/weighed-and-found.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Don Elbourne, reflecting on Lakeshore Baptist’s 97th anniversary last Sunday:

    “This past Sunday Lakeshore Baptist Church celebrated our 97th anniversary. A handful of believers met together in 1911 to found the church in Lakeshore. In the sparse minutes of that meeting we learn that the moderator read from their Articles of Faith and their Church Covenant. The record also gave a definite list of five original church members. I pointed to these three pieces of data and appealed to the churches founders as examples to dedicate ourselves to upholding and valuing sound doctrine, our covenant promises to each other, and to maintain definite responsible caring church membership rolls for the glory of God.”

    Source: http://elbourne.org/archives/2008/06/10/responsible-church-membership/

    We need more churches like Lakeshore!

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Tim Taylor, on his blog:

    “This resolution is intriguing and may be pointing to continued renewal in the SBC. I think it would be much healthier for the Convention if it were noticeably smaller, but full of people who give some signs of actually being regenerate and attending church. It’ll be interesting to see what the newly elected president Johhny Hunt will do since he’s the pastor of a megachurch with a number of people on the church rolls who don’t attend regularly. If he sets the right example this could be very instrumental in the life and future of the SBC.”

    Source: http://timtaylor.edublogs.org/2008/06/11/resolution-on-integrity-in-church-membership-passed/

  • Jason

    Timmy,

    Have you come across any blogs or articles of people that were opposed to the resolution?

    It would seem that there would have to be a good number of people somewhere who are not happy with the resolution…considering at least one third of the messengers voted against it.

    I’d be curious to hear dissenting views.

    Jason

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Rusty,

    You asked, “Why do we see the passing of this resolution as such a big change? Because it has not passed in the past or what? Also, I didn’t hear much about Voddie Baucham this year, is he on the out’s with sbc folks?”

    I am not seeing the passing of a resolution as a big change as much as I see it a move in the right direction. For nearly 50 years, Southern Baptists have been spiraling out of control with statistics which reflected our abandonment to regenerate church membership. To overturn this tide will take more than a resolution, but a resolution and convention consensus is a great place to start. It would be naive and short-sighted to think that a resolution would solve the problems, but then again, it would be unnecessarily over-critical to say that this was an unprofitable labor.

    Regarding Baucham, I have no idea. I think that the resolution on cultural engagement was somewhat of a direct rebuttal to his vision of family and culture, but like many Southern Baptists today, Baucham could be finding the SBC to be unnecessary. Again, I have not talked to Voddie nor do I pretend to know his whereabouts regarding affiliation or involvement within the SBC. I do know that he is highly respected and sought after both within and without the SBC, and regardless of his storefront visibility, he will remain as such for years to come.

    Regarding his work on family issues, I highly recommend this book Family-Driven Faith and see it is a pioneering work in the field of family-centered discipleship and church life (although I am not totally on board with the family-integrated churches).

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jason,

    I found one so far. Bryan Gotcher writes the following on his blog:

    “On regenerate church membership and church member restoration. This one took awhile. It was ammended [sic] twice. Both times to include stronger language. One of the times to include a section on corporate repentence [sic]. I would have voted for it in its original form, but I have a problem with corporate repentance that comes from a resolution and not the peoples hearts by a movement of God. I voted against it only because of the last ammendment [sic]. But it didn’t matter. Of course resolutions like this don’t really mean much unless the pastor or church wants to do something about it, so probably not much will happen.”

    Source: http://youthguyblog.blogspot.com/2008/06/resolustions-1-6.html

    If I find anymore, I will try to point them out.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Wayne,

    Voddie and Eric for Pres and 1st VP would be great. But yeah, you (and I) are dreaming. :)

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    BTW, I will not be covering any of the evenings for Wednesday evening. I am off to our services and will be participating in member interviews following. I will check back late in the evening.

    Timmy

  • Matthew Crawford

    Nether Voddie nor Mohler could be president next year anyway, because Hunt will get his gentleman’s second term, right? Unless he voluntarily stepped down to let someone else run on the historic occasion of the SBTS 150th anniversary . . . .

  • http://www.5solas.com Matt Privett

    After going to the Founders Breakfast and hearing him for the first time, I’m tempted to start a Redmond in ’10 movement.

  • http://thomastwitchell.wordpress.com/ Thomas Twitchell

    Baptist churches told to repent-

    You’ve got to love that take on it. No one tells a SB to do anything, even God has to ask permission to interfere with a SB’s autonomy-

    Okay, it’s not that bad-

    We’ll have to see what weight this will carry. It has been a long fight for ta, a good one, and a well deserved victory.

    Now one more resolution:

    Whereas bloggers can reach and teach many concerning the need for revival of the GC mandate to discipline and not just evangelism,

    Whereas, though inflated stats are a strong delusion, we’re the elect,

    Whereas our eyes are ever watching,

    Whereas we can broadly influence keeping toes held to the fire, be it

    Resolved that the bloggoshere shepherd the regenerate membership resolution to maturity…

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Matthew,

    Regarding the second-year term you are right (generally). Once someone wins the presidency in the first year, his second year rarely gets challenged.

    Matt,

    Yeah, I am really impressed with Redmond. Can’t wait to listen to his message at the Founders breakfast.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Kevin Schaub, on Elect Exiles blog:

    Personally, I believe that this is an important resolution by the convention, and it will only matter if the churches that cooperate with the SBC will take it to heart and begin to act on it. As you may already know, of the 16,266,920 SBC members reported in the ACP reports (annual church profile), only 6,148,868 are accounted for in weekly average attendance (i.e. 62% AWOL). The result is obvious: Southern Baptists need “to repent of the failure among us to live up to our professed commitment to regenerate church membership and any failure to obey Jesus Christ in the practice of lovingly correcting wayward church members.”

    “It has been my prayer now for several months that many churches where I currently live will begin to lead the way in reaffirming regenerate church membership both in conviction and in practice. I have asked that the church I am currently preaching at (interim pastor) to take a look at their roles, call those missing, visit them, share the gospel with them, take them off if necessary. Repentance is always a good thing. If you feel compelled to bring this up at your church, do it with humility. I do hope you will pray about it.”

    Source: http://electexiles.wordpress.com/2008/06/11/sbc-on-regenerate-church-membership/

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Ed Stetzer, on his new and improved blog:

    “Many have asked me what I think of today’s SBC meeting. Let me tell you. I am encouraged. If you are at the meeting, you heard several things:

    1. We are struggling and people are now seeing that reality.
    2. The answer is not more fighting, but a clearer focus on the gospel.
    3. The divisions are hurting and not helping.
    4. Younger generations need to be reclaimed.

    . . . There is much work to do, but I believe we are a step closer today. I believe that the convention is speaking loudly and many are listening.”

    Source: http://blogs.lifeway.com/blog/edstetzer/2008/06/sbc-tuesday.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Johnny Hunt, in an interview by Bob Smietana of the Tennessean, on regenerate church membership:

    Question:

    This area of ‘regenerate membership’ has prompted a lot of discussion. The convention has 16 million members but only about 6 million in church each week. How do you deal with that issue?

    Hunt’s response:

    There are two ways to deal with it. Some would say, ‘Clean up the rolls. If they’re not going to come, take them off.’ And then what you have to deal with is we are living in a generation (with different views on commitments). I probably minister to 10,000 people every 30 days; they’re just not there every week. USA Today did a story not long ago and a person said if they go once a month, they feel they’re active. I would not say they are, but I have to give them credit that in their heart, that’s where they feel they are. I would like to see them more committed, but we work on that. We try to call them; we try to write those who are not coming. But I think what we are saying with regenerate church membership is we need to do a better job, and who would not agree?

    When someone comes forward (to be a member of Hunt’s church), I have a trained counselor, and I want that trained counselor to go back and make sure this person understands what it takes to become a believer. We have new-member classes. It’s not mandatory, but we highly recommend they go, and the majority do go through our class.

    We have to be very careful. If you try to take this to the lowest common denominator, before too long, you’ll find the pastors and the church leadership to try to separate the sheep from the goats (an allusion to a parable about the separation of the heaven- and hell-bound), and only Jesus and the angels he assigned can do that.”

    Source: http://www.courier-journal.com/blogs/faith/2008/06/interview-with-new-baptist-president.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Hunt’s comment,

    “If you try to take this to the lowest common denominator, before too long, you’ll find the pastors and the church leadership to try to separate the sheep from the goats (an allusion to a parable about the separation of the heaven- and hell-bound), and only Jesus and the angels he assigned can do that”

    is not something that our forefathers would agree with.

    Sure, no one knows the heart of a person, but Baptists have historically said that it is the responsibility of the leadership and the congregation to discern credible professions of faith that bear the marks of regeneration. It is not that we have pressed this to far. It’s that we haven’t even got a finger on the issue.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Justin Nale, on his blog:

    “In the end, the most important moment of this convention was the adoption of the regenerate church membership resolution. May God use it to make our local churches more healthy, and therefore our denomination more healthy, and then, ultimately, the kingdom of God on earth more healthy.”

    Source: http://ncbaptist.blogspot.com/2008/06/final-indy-update.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Baptist Press’ complete report on the resolution on regenerate church membership:

    http://www.bpnews.net/BPnews.asp?ID=28262

    From the report:

    “Alluding to the biblical story of King Solomon identifying the real mother of a child by threatening to cut the child in two (1 Kings 3:16-28), Orman said: “We took the DNA of those four resolutions and we made one child. We want to present that to you and those who presented those resolutions we’d like to encourage, ‘Would the real mother let the resolution live?'”

    The committee’s strategy was not as successful as Solomon’s, however, as authors of two submitted resolutions proposed amendments to insert wording from their proposals into the resolution before the messengers.”

    Not only did the Resolutions committee have to re-write the resolution by the will of the messengers, mishandling of the Scripture was employed in the process in order to intimidate any revisions. Totally not cool.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Wade Phillips, on his blog:

    “I must tell you that I am very excited about something that Southern Baptists did at the annual convention today. As I told you about a couple of weeks ago, Dr. Tom Ascol, the Pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Cape Coral, Florida, has been trying for three years now to get a resolution passed urging Southern Baptists to get their rolls straight, and repent of what is essentially lying about membership numbers. Southern Baptists claim a membership of 16 million people, but less than 7 million show up to church on any given week. That’s atrocious.

    [ . . .] The things I like about this resolution are 1) The admission that our numbers are not right, that we are basically lying to the world about how many of us there are, 2) that it recognizes that many of our churches have not been doing a very good job of keeping up with their people, or exercising biblical, restorative discipline, and 3) that it calls for corporate repentance over our reluctance to do what we ought to have been doing all along.

    [ . . .] As I mentioned in the past, my church has already begun this process. I hope and pray that others will feel led to do the same. This might cost us our title of “Largest Protestant Denomination” title. We might lose some press coverage or some political clout if our numbers decline too much. But will be a much better, more biblical, more healthy, convention because of it.”

    Source: http://wade-phillips.blogspot.com/2008/06/resolution-on-integrity-in-church.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Ted Olsen editor of CT, on CT’s live blog regarding Hunt and his position on Calvinism:

    It’s clear that Hunt is no fan of the growing Calvinist movement within the Southern Baptist Convention. He’s hosting a major conference to refute Calvinism at his church in November. But most of the candidates were not friendly to Calvinism, and Hunt has given indications that he’s not out to purge the denomination of Reformed influences.

    “I am not overwhelmingly concerned about Calvinism,” Hunt told Baptist Press two weeks ago. “I am concerned about hyper-Calvinism, simply being defined as those that take election to the point that they feel that the Gospel should not even be shared with the whole world. … I trust that Calvinists, and those who love Jesus of other persuasions, would come together for the common cause of making Jesus Christ known to the nations. There is plenty of room for all of us in this Baptist family.”

    Source: http://blog.christianitytoday.com/ctliveblog/archives/2008/06/johnny_hunt_win.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Well, there you have it. :)

    Coverage and linkage to 2008 Annual Meeting in Indy is over. Back to regularly scheduled bloggage.

  • ABClay

    Well Done Brother. Thank You.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    No problem, ABClay.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    David Richardson, on his blog:

    “A few years ago, I changed in how I answered the question of how many members we have in our church. Rather than stating how many members were on the church roll, I began stating how many members were active in the church on a regular basis. Why? Because those two numbers were different…really different! One number was impressive. The other number was honest.

    Let’s just be real here for a moment: A lot of churches are just plain lying about their number of members. I hear it all the time! Churches will boast that they have 500 members…but in reality, only 175 of these “members” actually attend services on a somewhat regular basis.

    It’s time for Southern Baptists to be honest about how many people are actively involved with churches, instead of boasting about how many names are on church rolls.”

    Source: http://palmettorev.blogspot.com/2008/06/church-membership.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jeff Wright, on his blog:

    “For the past two years I’ve watched in frustration as our national Convention has been denied the opportunity to vote on one of the most important resolutions proposed to our denomination. Finally the frustration is over. . . . When I told my wife she said “Praise the Lord” and I couldn’t agree more. This is one of, if not the, most healthy moves made by our Convention in the past decade. Again, praise the Lord.”

    Source: http://jeffwright.exaltchrist.com/?p=397

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jeff Floyd, on his blog:

    “On Tuesday, the convention passed a resolution “On regenerate church membership.” Why? For one, our convention leadership has, for years, touted the fact that we are 16 million strong. However, on any given Sunday, only 6 million or so show up for church. Where are the other ten? Are they wandering with the lost tribes? Who knows. The thing is, more than reflecting numbers of a convention, they reflect the state of churches, like my own, who have scores (sometimes hundreds) of names on a roll and we can’t even find them. My church calls them non-resident. What we are actually saying is that we don’t really care enough to try and find and encourage these “believers” to come back or find another place of worship.

    [ . . .] I think this (resolution) is extremely significant. But only if churches in general and pastors specifically take this problem seriously. I am certainly praying about how I as a shepherd can do a better job than I have in keeping track of the sheep. Pray for me as I do.”

    Source: http://jafloyd.wordpress.com/2008/06/12/southern-baptist-convention-08/

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Colin McGahey, on his blog:

    “First, I think Tom Ascol, Bart Barber and Malcolm Yarnell deserve cooperative effort of the year in regards to SBC politics in order to get the convention to hear, understand, think through and ultimately pass a resolution on regenerate church membership. Tom Ascol should feel proud of his perennial efforts to get the convention to embrace the New Testament concept of a believer’s church. I also thank the Lord for such men such as Dr. Malcolm Yarnell and Dr. Bart Barber who have continually championed thoughtful, doctrinally-rich initiatives, proposals and works reminding Southern Baptists of the New Testament principals that drew free churchmen together in the wake of the Reformation. I am proud of our convention for embracing this basic free-church distinctive.”

    Source: http://seminaryblog.blogspot.com/2008/06/sbc-2008.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Jonathan Christman, on his blog:

    “Tom Ascol’s resolution calling for integrity, purity of church membership and the biblical practice of church discipline among Southern Baptist’s made the floor of the Southern Baptist Convention today. After some dialogue and clarification, and by the grace of God, the resolution passed. Praise God! . . . What is amazing is that not only did it reach the floor, but it passed. Now may God give to churches the conviction necessary to actually implement the resolution and pursue regenerate church membership.”

    Source: http://epangelia.blogspot.com/2008/06/great-resolution-passes-for-southern.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Terry Delaney, on his blog:

    “I am happy to report that the resolution on regenerate church membership passed today. It was amended a bit, but it passed with what I believe is the one of the more important items and that is a call for repentance. It will be interesting to see how this resolution will impact the local church. I was telling a friend of mine that trying to purge a church roll is harder (is this possible?) than changing the color of the carpet. I pray that the Lord would use this resolution to bring integrity back to our local churches. I truly believe that if we cannot be honest with our church roll, then how are we to expect the world to trust us? I wonder if Jesus was talking about this kind of thing when He said, “One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much” (Lk 16:10)?”

    Source: http://sbtsstudent.blogspot.com/2008/06/3-12-hours-at-dentist.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Pastor Ryan, on his blog:

    “At the heart of the issue is the problem between analyzing spiritual growth versus numerical growth. Southern Baptists have long been evaluating progress according to nickels and noses, when Jesus made it abundantly clear that the true measure of a church is discipleship. Yes, Jesus commanded His church to baptize people in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. However, the instruction to make them disciples was the heart of the issue.

    Membership in a church means more than just having your name on the roll. Membership means you are in covenant with that local body of baptized believers – to serve, to give, to minister, to enhance. The problem within our convention is that we have 16 million members, with only 6 million participating every weekend. Where are the other 10 million? The inflation of membership numbers among Southern Baptists is an integrity issue. More importantly, it is a spiritual issue.”

    Source: http://crosspointchurch.wordpress.com/2008/06/12/the-southern-baptist-convention/

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Thabiti Anyabwile, on his blog:

    “The Southern Baptist Convention passed a resolution on regenerate church membership. This has been a much-debated issue in recent convention years. But it seems the steadfast labors of pastors and servants like Tom Ascol and Malcolm Yarnell have paid off . Ascol explains what happened. Pray that resolution results in genuine resolve so that the Lord’s bride may be beautified in all her ways.”

    Source: http://purechurch.blogspot.com/2008/06/all-in-favor-sbc-passes-resolution-on.html

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    From the Baptist Standard paper:

    “The resolution on regenerate church membership drew two amendments that encouraged churches to tighten membership definitions. The original resolution called for “churches to maintain a regenerate membership by acknowledging the necessity of spiritual regeneration of Christ’s lordship for all members” and urged churches to “maintain accurate membership rolls for the purpose of fostering ministry and accountability.”

    It also urged churches to “restore wayward members.”

    After much discussion, messengers adopted two amendments. The first, offered by Malcolm Yarnell, a professor at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, added to the definition of New Testament church. The original included the definition “composed only of those who have been born again by the Holy Spirit through the preaching of the word, becoming disciples of Jesus Christ, the local church’s only Lord, by grace through faith.” The amendment added as further definition: “which church practices believers only baptism by immersion, (Math 28:16-20,) the Lords’ Supper (Matt. 26:26-30) and church discipline. (Matt. 18:15-20)

    Messengers adopted an amendment by Tom Ascol, prominent in the Calvinist Founder’s Movement in the Southern Baptist Convention, urging “the churches of the SBC to repent of any failure among us to live up to our professed commitment to regenerate church membership and any failure to obey Jesus Christ in lovingly correcting wayward church members.”

    The amendment encouraged “denominational servants to support and encourage any church’s efforts to recover and implement this discipline of our Lord Jesus Christ …even if such efforts result in a reduction in the number of members that are recorded in those churches.”

    Source: http://www.baptiststandard.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=8102&Itemid=53

    Gotta love how denominational papers refer to people . . .

    Tom Ascol, “prominent in the Calvinist Founders movement . . .”

    Why not Tom Ascol, pastor of Grace Baptist Church, Cape Coral, FL?

    Try doing that to Johnny Hunt (Johnny Hunt, prominent in the anti-Calvinist movement in the SBC . . .) Nope – would not fly.

  • bill p

    You need to grow up and stop acting so victimized. Even if what the baptist standard wrote could have been stated differently, what you wrote about johnny hunt is outright wrong and unhelpful to unity within our convention. If you have problem with the baptist standard you need to contact them and leave it at that.

    Plus, Johnny hunt is not anti-calvinist. He may not believe Calvinism is biblical. But he is not anti-calvinist. If anything my experience has been that founders is anti-noncalvinist. That has proven to be far worse. God only knows how many churches have been destoyed by the founder-friendly folks, including the church I now pastor.

  • http://timmybrister.wordpress.com/ Timmy Brister

    Bill,

    Thanks for the drive-by ad-hominem. What have I said about Johnny Hunt as a person and a minister that has not been but positive? Thou speakest of what thou knowest not.

    Regarding Hunt’s record on Calvinism, I have a 25 page chronological listing of all the rants/attacks/caricatures against Calvinism made by Southern Baptists, not the least of which has been Hunt himself. The public record is clear on this, and while I am encouraged to see that he has softened on his approach and stopped the unhelpful rhetoric, he has a record that follows him nonetheless. I look forward to, Lord willing, supporting Hunt as the new president of the SBC.

    Speaking of acting victimized, you speak ill against Founders as though you yourself are a victim. No evidence, no substantiation. Just a broad-based, ambiguous slur. Is that how a grown-up is supposed to act? But I digress.

    Before you feel compelled to rant on someone’s blog, I suggest that you reconsider the merits of your claims and spare yourself from committing the very act you accuse others of doing.

    And for the record, I have a very loose administrative policy when it comes to moderating comments. I want everyone to have the opportunity to share their thoughts on the matter; however, repeated ad-hominems and rants of this nature unfortunately will not be tolerated. Should you choose to interact in the future, I ask that you choose another method of engagement. Thanks.