Thursday, January 11, 2007

The Democratic Baptist Convention

Former Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton are working to unite Baptists in North America. Both of the ex-presidents were, at one time, part of the Southern Baptist Convention but withdrew from the denomination because of its conservative beliefs. Now the men have introduced an idea that they submit will heal divisions between all Baptists and focus on the common factors between the groups. Carter said, "Our Goal is to extend an invitation to all Baptists."

They extended this invitation to take part in the unifying plan to 80 leaders from 40 Baptist organizations. The one group not on the invitation list was the Southern Baptist Convention -- the largest Baptist denomination in the world. Interesting huh?
The reason every other Baptist group in America was invited and the SBC was not is simple: conservatives are not welcome. Bill Underwood, president of Mercer University and the mind behind this madness, let his bias show in a statement made on this plan. He said, "The only image most North Americans have of Baptists comes from right-wing leaders who frequently appear on television news shows or other medial, representing some of the most negative rhetoric, most conservative political views and most fundamentalist theology." So back to Jimmy Carter's earlier statement... "extend an invitation to all Baptists"? Here's what he really meant, "We will extend an invitation to everyone except those with conservative political views and fundamentalist theology."
Basically, Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton want to start a Democratic Baptist Convention! One in which homosexuals are accepted, women are ordained, doctrine doesn't matter, and everyone just talks about love and acceptance. This is awful -- and I haven't even pointed out the fact that Bill Clinton is the religious leader here!
This brings me to two conclusions. First, I am saddened that there are deeply religious people who just don't get it. They want everyone to be happy and hold hands and just love. But they are willing to unite at the expense of doctrine. Virgin birth? Big deal! Literal hell? Doesn't matter! Jesus the only way to God? Who cares! Well, Mr. Carter and Mr. Clinton, those things DO matter. In fact, Scripture teaches that doctrine is what unites us (Eph. 4:13, 1 John 4:1-3). Let's pray for these erring 'Baptists', that they might see the truths of Scripture and unite on doctrine first.
My second conclusion is that I see, yet again, how thankful we Southern Baptist should be for the trials that kept the SBC from turning into a liberal mess. We were on the brink of disaster. Our seminaries were teaching heresies and practicing immorality. Our pastors were standing in pulpits, ripping God's Word to shreds. But by the grace of God and the work of some very dedicated men (Paige Patterson, Adrian Rogers, Jimmy Draper, Al Mohler, etc.), we younger Southern Baptists are not faced with battles over the inerrancy of God's Word or the ordination of homosexuals. I praise our Good and Gracious God for keeping us from such errors and pray that future generations would remain loyal to "the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 3)."

Related Post:
Are Liberal Christians really Atheists?

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