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Calvinism & The Doctrines of Grace discuss SBC and Calvinism in the Theology forums; Please read the new document from a few SBC pastors: An Introduction to feel free to comment. Someone on the Baptistboard posted James White's facebook ...

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    SolaSaint's Avatar
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    SBC and Calvinism

    Please read the new document from a few SBC pastors:

    An Introduction to

    feel free to comment. Someone on the Baptistboard posted James White's facebook comment on this--I look forward to the next Dividing Line, I'm sure he will have a lot to say on this. I would love to hear what any SBCers in here feel about this?
    Rick
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    Do the Founders group have a response out to this yet?

    Since the SBC was started by Calvinists, then I would say non-calvinists are not traditional SBCs but are instead pushing forth a new doctrine.
    Chris Thomas | Grace Reformed Baptist Church | Bonham, TX

    Non nobis, Domine, non nobis, sed nomini tuo da gloriam!
    So if ye destroy the Letter of the Scripture, you do destroy the Scripture; and if you do deny the Letter, how is it possible that you should attain to the true sense thereof, when the Sense lies wrapped up in the Letters, and the words thereof?
    Samuel Rutherford - A Free Disputation Against Pretended Liberty of Conscience
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    Founders Ministries Blog: A Statement of Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God's Plan of Salvation, Part 2

    Ascol's commentary on the document is right on as far as I'm concerned. He levels the same concern I have about the so-called agenda or plot of New Calvinists to push their views upon the SBC. Seems the powers that be at the SBC need to be a little more clear on who has come along and demanded the SBC follow Calvinistic doctrines over what is in place.

    I guess if anything this will get many to research and find out the DOG are biblical. I hope!
    Rick
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    I'm saddened by this but not surprised. I came to the PCA from the SBC about 10 years ago. My former pastor's name is on the list of signatures. Others on it spoke at the church, and another is a local pastor whose church I have visited.

    I won't say that what I have experienced from these men represent the whole, but I will say that I could post things here that I saw and heard that would hardly be believed- both doctrine and practice a sordid mess.

    Praying for the SBC. I don't say these things with pride of where I'm come from to where I am, as I'm painfully aware that there are goings-on of a different sort that require deep prayers of concern in my own denomination as well.
    "Ignorance of the nature and design of the law is at the bottom of most religious mistakes." --John Newton

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    Jake is offline. Puritanboard Sophomore
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    Notice how many signatures from Truett-McConnell College. The SBC church I am a member of but no longer attend is a big supporter of that school, including a minister on the board. Definitely the most synergistic SBC school I know of.
    Jake
    Member, OPC
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    KMK's Avatar
    KMK
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    I have never been in a SBC church. What is so great about the SBC that everyone wants to be a part of it?


    Village Community Church of Wrightwood

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    "Preparing a sermon is like cooking a meal. You need pots and pans and utensils, but you don't bring them out to the table where people are eating." Derek Thomas


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    Quote Originally Posted by KMK View Post
    I have never been in a SBC church. What is so great about the SBC that everyone wants to be a part of it?
    Potlucks.
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    KMK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AThornquist View Post
    Potlucks


    BTW, your new avatar is a crack-up, Andrew. You could be on the cover of the next WOW Worship album.


    Village Community Church of Wrightwood

    Transformation Ministries

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    wow. that was a discouraging document to read.
    Ruling Elder
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    Favorite authors include Elisha Coles, John Flavel, John Owen, Joseph Lathrop and Jonathan Edwards.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KMK View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by AThornquist View Post
    Potlucks


    BTW, your new avatar is a crack-up, Andrew. You could be on the cover of the next WOW Worship album.
    Thanks, that has always been my dream. I've also been writing love songs that I can add "Jesus" and "hallelujah" into so that I can at least be a CCM one-hit wonder.

    Anyway. The Calvinistic SBC churches I am familiar with (such as my own church) desire to remain a part of the SBC because it helps us work together with like-minded churches for the sake of the Gospel. Despite some vocal Arminians in the SBC, and even real opposition in some local associations that are subsets of the SBC, there are benefits to being in the SBC, especially considering the fact that Calvinism is a growing force in our association, thus increasing our overall like-mindedness; however vocal the Arminians may be, I really do think we are returning to our theological roots in one degree or another.

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    I noticed that the Caner brothers signed it.
    Bob, elder, RBC Louisville. 1689 LBCF

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    Quote Originally Posted by rbcbob View Post
    I noticed that the Caner brothers signed it.
    It's amazing that anyone would still let them sign a Christian document. C'est le vie.

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    Bethel is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    Quote Originally Posted by KMK View Post
    I have never been in a SBC church. What is so great about the SBC that everyone wants to be a part of it?
    When the SBC is the strongest reformed church in town, you have to make the best choice with the options given. We also have a PCUSA and PCA church in our city. However, the local PCA church will not take a stance on creation (IMO--because of their close tie with Baylor), and therefore, have a sub-standard view of the Westminster Confessions. The lack of conviction for a literal 6-day creation was a deal-breaker for us; we could never consider joining that church.

    We love our current SBC and note that the reformed leaders take their SBC tie very lightly.

    I found that article very discouraging. Regardless of the denomination, I think it reflects what many "Christians" believe today. I still can't get past this sentence:

    We deny that Christ died only for the sins of those who will be saved.

    It floors me every time I read it.
    ~Bethel
    Member, SBC Central TX
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    Article Eight: The Free Will of Man

    We affirm that God, as an expression of His sovereignty, endows each person with actual free will (the ability to choose between two options), which must be exercised in accepting or rejecting God’s gracious call to salvation by the Holy Spirit through the Gospel.

    We deny that the decision of faith is an act of God rather than a response of the person. We deny that there is an “effectual call” for certain people that is different from a “general call” to any person who hears and understands the Gospel.
    IOW, Romans 9:16 got it wrong and it IS of him who wills and not of God who shows mercy.
    "Ignorance of the nature and design of the law is at the bottom of most religious mistakes." --John Newton

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    Despite this document, the SBC is changing. There is a reformation going on, even if some people are unaware of it or do not like it. Within 20 years, I believe that Dispensationalism and anti-Calvinism will decline to the point that they are no longer a serious force within the SBC.
    Bill Perkins
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    Here is a good book on the SBC, I recomend it to anyone who has high hopes for the conservative direction and vision it has. I pray for my brothers and sisters in the SBC that they should keep fighting the good fight as they always have.
    Amazon.com: Southern Baptist Identity: An Evangelical Denomination Faces the Future (9781433506796): David S. Dockery, R. Albert Mohler Jr., R. Stanton Norman, Gregory A. Wills, Timothy George, Russell D. Moore, Paige Patterson, Daniel L. Akin, Richa


    Here is a book on Calvinism in the SBC, it is a collection of essays from different authors from both sides.
    Calvinism -*A Southern Baptist Dialogue*by Brad J. Waggoner and E. Ray Clendenen* || B&H Academic
    Last edited by jwright82; 06-01-2012 at 06:51 PM.
    James
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    Quote Originally Posted by AThornquist View Post
    Potlucks.
    Are those held in the food court near the Starbucks, or would it be in the restaurant?
    Edward
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    PCA
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    reaganmarsh is offline. Puritanboard Sophomore
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    I have had a couple of church members ask me about this already.

    I am hopeful that the vitriol being spewed in the blogosphere will subside, and that sound exegesis will prevail. I would love to think that the SBC might undergo a reformation. I will be happy, however, for the SBC not to start issuing "Kick out the Calvinists"-type calls.

    In this month's "Christian Index" (the Georgia State Baptist Convention's monthly newspaper), there was a full-page article on how regeneration does not precede faith, and it highlighted a fairly prominent SBC pastor from Mississippi who is going to introduce a resolution at this year's Convention on how churches should be confindent in using the Sinner's Prayer. Basically that means that we'll go on the record as a denomination affirming that people should "ask Jesus into your heart."

    I hope that this whole business doesn't get ugly. It certainly has the hotheads in the right places for it to do so, and quickly...and it seems that the Great Commission Resurgence effort is being set aside...not to mention that they're going beyond the BFM 2000.

    However I must say that I am incredibly thankful for Tom Ascol's gracious and irenic interations with the document. He is setting the pace for the reformed side of the house, and I pray that we follow suit.
    Last edited by reaganmarsh; 06-02-2012 at 12:34 AM. Reason: Clarifying statement.
    Rev. Reagan Marsh, MATS, MDiv (equiv.)
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    My confessional commitments are the London Baptist Confession (1689) and the Abstract of Principles (1858).
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    Pastor Marsh,
    I believe that the stage is set for a split in the SBC similar to the Conservative/"Moderate" split in the late '80s. The Arminians may have the numbers as far as "membership" goes but the political clout rests with the Calvinists.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KMK View Post
    I have never been in a SBC church. What is so great about the SBC that everyone wants to be a part of it?
    Most want to be a part of it because of the cooperative program. The SBC is able to send out tons of missionaries because they all pool their money in the CP. The fact that missionaries are denominationally supported is a big encouragement to the smaller churches who cannot send missionaries out on their own--so, they contribute their money and know that it is helping send out workers into the field. At least that was the reasoning by a couple churches when I was an SBC pastor.
    soli Deo gloria!
    ~Nicholas~
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    reaganmarsh is offline. Puritanboard Sophomore
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    Bob,

    I confess that I've thought the same things lately, but when the GCR came into the picture, there were signatories from both camps. Things had appeared to be moving forward. It seemed that we were going to be able to spend our energies in working together for Christ's Kingdom, not to advance misguided denominational goals.

    However, as I stated previously, I am hoping and praying that sound exegesis and cooler heads will prevail. God is sovereign in this. I'm not afraid of a split, though I always long to see brothers dwell together in unity, and there has been significant mudslinging on both sides already; my concern is that the glory of God not be tarnished in the eyes of a watching world amidst our political posturing.
    Rev. Reagan Marsh, MATS, MDiv (equiv.)
    Pastor-Teacher, Beacon Baptist Church of Albany, GA (since April 2011)
    We are a Southern Baptist Convention church.
    My confessional commitments are the London Baptist Confession (1689) and the Abstract of Principles (1858).
    "The Bible is alive, it speaks to me; it has feet, it runs after me; it has hands, it lays hold of me." -- Luther

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    Quote Originally Posted by rbcbob View Post
    The Arminians may have the numbers as far as "membership" goes
    Not certain that's an issue....most of them can't be found anyway!
    MarieP
    Reformed Baptist Church
    Louisville, KY

    "I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies and of all the truth which You have shown Your servant" (Gen. 32:10)
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    This was no surprise to me. I would seem these folks have one foot in Pelagius's yard and one in Wesley's. "We deny that Adam’s sin resulted in the incapacitation of any person’s free will or rendered any person guilty before he has personally sinned....." Scary.......
    Greg
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gforce9 View Post
    This was no surprise to me. I would seem these folks have one foot in Pelagius's yard and one in Wesley's. "We deny that Adam’s sin resulted in the incapacitation of any person’s free will or rendered any person guilty before he has personally sinned....." Scary.......
    Is denial of original sin typical of Arminian Baptists? I know that the Arminians at my church do believe in original sin.
    Benjamin Davenport -- Seattle, WA
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    Quote Originally Posted by davenporter View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Gforce9 View Post
    This was no surprise to me. I would seem these folks have one foot in Pelagius's yard and one in Wesley's. "We deny that Adam’s sin resulted in the incapacitation of any person’s free will or rendered any person guilty before he has personally sinned....." Scary.......
    Is denial of original sin typical of Arminian Baptists? I know that the Arminians at my church do believe in original sin.
    I would say, typically, you get nonsense like this from the laity. This was from more of the leadership. The answer to your question would depend on who you're talking to in a particular situation. Most Arminians would affirm Original Sin (with a more "gutted" definition), then go on to articulate a more Pelagian/Weslyian hybrid, just like the article revealed.
    Greg
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    Quote Originally Posted by davenporter View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Gforce9 View Post
    This was no surprise to me. I would seem these folks have one foot in Pelagius's yard and one in Wesley's. "We deny that Adam’s sin resulted in the incapacitation of any person’s free will or rendered any person guilty before he has personally sinned....." Scary.......
    Is denial of original sin typical of Arminian Baptists? I know that the Arminians at my church do believe in original sin.
    In IFBx churches I attended they deny the Doctrine of Original Sin, but affirm what they call the doctrine of original sin. Their doctrine is either one starts out pure or that original sin does not make one unable and unwilling to respond to the gospel call.
    Chris Thomas | Grace Reformed Baptist Church | Bonham, TX

    Non nobis, Domine, non nobis, sed nomini tuo da gloriam!
    So if ye destroy the Letter of the Scripture, you do destroy the Scripture; and if you do deny the Letter, how is it possible that you should attain to the true sense thereof, when the Sense lies wrapped up in the Letters, and the words thereof?
    Samuel Rutherford - A Free Disputation Against Pretended Liberty of Conscience
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    Just an update on the issue: Roger Olson, a self-confessed Classical Arminian, has stated that the document is more semi-Pelagian than Arminian. See here.

    I had thought this myself. Perhaps God will use such a statement as Olson's to awaken the signatories to how much biblical turf they've just ceded to Pelagius and Finney. My prayer is that God will be glorified through this debate, and that the true gospel of his grace will be clarified for the SBC.
    Rev. Reagan Marsh, MATS, MDiv (equiv.)
    Pastor-Teacher, Beacon Baptist Church of Albany, GA (since April 2011)
    We are a Southern Baptist Convention church.
    My confessional commitments are the London Baptist Confession (1689) and the Abstract of Principles (1858).
    "The Bible is alive, it speaks to me; it has feet, it runs after me; it has hands, it lays hold of me." -- Luther
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    One of my elders mentioned this to me this past Sunday. I read the document open-mouthed - seeing Pelagian and Arminian doctrines firmly embraced. And seeing the name of the former "Senior Pastor" of my previous church as a signatory - that part did NOT surprise me. I do thank the Lord for those such as Tom Ascol and Voddie Baucham who can present the biblical case for the doctrines of grace with much grace and no compromise.
    Stuart L. Brogden
    [B][I][COLOR="#0000CD"]Truth offends man; half-truth offends God[/COLOR][/I][/B]
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    alb1 is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    The SBC is an alliance of "like minded" churches working in "friendly" cooperation under the heading of Southern Baptists. "Like minded" included both Calvinists and those with differing beliefs as long as the Calvinists were a tiny, silent minority. Now that the numbers of Calvinist seminary grads has increased significantly and the Calvinists are very vocal in the denomination (though still a minority), the "like mindedness" is questionable. It is very understandable since the very character of God is at the heart of the debate.

    An attempt was made with the GCR to give both sides something they could truly be "like minded" about. Unfortunately human nature is continually going against the "friendly" cooperation needed for the SBC to carry this out. It's difficult to be "friendly" with those you believe are not "like minded" and detrimental to your cause.

    Being a former Southern Baptist (of the non Calvinist variety), and knowing firsthand the nature of man, I can't see this relationship ending anywhere but in the formation of two different denominations at some point.
    Last edited by alb1; 06-06-2012 at 12:50 PM. Reason: can't spell
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    Well, Al Mohler responded to the controversy this morning. I just wish that Dr. Mohler would have been a bit more firm & reminded his readers that Semi-Pelagianism isn't just a view "that virtually all Southern Baptists have denied," but also was condemned as a heresy at the Council of Orange (529 AD).

    AlbertMohler.com – Southern Baptists and Salvation: It’s Time to Talk

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    Quote Originally Posted by Caleb Phillips View Post
    Well, Al Mohler responded to the controversy this morning. I just wish that Dr. Mohler would have been a bit more firm & reminded his readers that Semi-Pelagianism isn't just a view "that virtually all Southern Baptists have denied," but also was condemned as a heresy at the Council of Orange (529 AD).

    AlbertMohler.com – Southern Baptists and Salvation: It’s Time to Talk
    Thanks for posting this. I agree - I expected a more firm response from Mohler and am disappointing to see him declare the Baptist Faith & Message to be a confession of faith. It fails to be that type of document in myriad ways.
    Stuart L. Brogden
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    Jake is offline. Puritanboard Sophomore
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    Two ministers from the church I am a member of have signed it. I had a feeling this was coming. Ironically, there are other 5 point Calvinists on staff. This is just going to create more division over the issue in that church.

    (For the record, I no longer attend the church)
    Jake
    Member, OPC
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    Surely, Dr. Mohler will come out with a "substantive" response. IMHO, he overplayed the "gracious" card. I heard Adrian Rogers preach against every point of Calvinism, other than "P." So, to say he was not "tribal" is somewhat amazing. Founders has done a decent job responding.
    Mark Edwards

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    Quote Originally Posted by Caleb Phillips View Post
    Well, Al Mohler responded to the controversy this morning. I just wish that Dr. Mohler would have been a bit more firm & reminded his readers that Semi-Pelagianism isn't just a view "that virtually all Southern Baptists have denied," but also was condemned as a heresy at the Council of Orange (529 AD).

    AlbertMohler.com – Southern Baptists and Salvation: It’s Time to Talk
    I too think that Mohler, while spot on with many points, comes off as soft here. And then one of Mohler's comments troubled me too...

    "It is certainly correct in denying that any person is regenerated “apart from hearing and responding to the Gospel.”

    In Webster's 1828, regeneration is defined as: "In theology, new birth by the grace of God; that change by which the will and natural enmity of man to God and his law are subdued, and a principle of supreme love to God and his law, or holy affections, are implanted in the heart. He saved us by the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit. Titus 3."

    Yes, faith comes from hearing and hearing through the word of Christ (Rom. 10:17), but regeneration is not based on, or proceeded by our responding. That would make Ephesians 2:5 inaccurate. Maybe I'm misunderstanding what he is trying to convey, but it sure sounds like he's agreeing to an Arminian belief there. Maybe he's trying to say that, when it's all said and done, if we are truly regenerated, we will have heard the word and we will have responded. If so, he probably should've stated that a little more clearly, cause as-is, it sounds like he's saying that regeneration hinges on our response.
    Matt Morrow
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    Quote Originally Posted by extolHIM View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Caleb Phillips View Post
    Well, Al Mohler responded to the controversy this morning. I just wish that Dr. Mohler would have been a bit more firm & reminded his readers that Semi-Pelagianism isn't just a view "that virtually all Southern Baptists have denied," but also was condemned as a heresy at the Council of Orange (529 AD).

    AlbertMohler.com – Southern Baptists and Salvation: It’s Time to Talk
    I too think that Mohler, while spot on with many points, comes off as soft here. And then one of Mohler's comments troubled me too...

    "It is certainly correct in denying that any person is regenerated “apart from hearing and responding to the Gospel.”

    In Webster's 1828, regeneration is defined as: "In theology, new birth by the grace of God; that change by which the will and natural enmity of man to God and his law are subdued, and a principle of supreme love to God and his law, or holy affections, are implanted in the heart. He saved us by the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit. Titus 3."

    Yes, faith comes from hearing and hearing through the word of Christ (Rom. 10:17), but regeneration is not based on, or proceeded by our responding. That would make Ephesians 2:5 inaccurate. Maybe I'm misunderstanding what he is trying to convey, but it sure sounds like he's agreeing to an Arminian belief there. Maybe he's trying to say that, when it's all said and done, if we are truly regenerated, we will have heard the word and we will have responded. If so, he probably should've stated that a little more clearly, cause as-is, it sounds like he's saying that regeneration hinges on our response.
    I see where you could be a tad troubled. Though I think he meant that regeneration always happens when the gospel is heard and believed.
    Earl, a man, married to a girl named Tina.
    Member of Willow Creek Church PCA in Winter Springs Florida.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by GulfCoast Presbyterian View Post
    Surely, Dr. Mohler will come out with a "substantive" response. IMHO, he overplayed the "gracious" card. I heard Adrian Rogers preach against every point of Calvinism, other than "P." So, to say he was not "tribal" is somewhat amazing. Founders has done a decent job responding.
    Don't forget that Dr. Mohler works for the SBC, so he has to be a little diplomatic considering that Calvinists are still in the minority in the SBC.
    Bill Perkins
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    "But His Word was in my heart like a burning fire, shut up in my bones, I was weary of holding it back, and I could not."-Jeremiah 20:9

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  37. #37
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    I would think that he works for the board of trustees of SBTS, but I don't know if they are independent, or appointed by the SBC. Dr. Mohler can't really hide in the weeds on this one. The synergists have called him out, by calling out Calvinist soteriorology.
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  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by GulfCoast Presbyterian View Post
    I would think that he works for the board of trustees of SBTS, but I don't know if they are independent, or appointed by the SBC. Dr. Mohler can't really hide in the weeds on this one. The synergists have called him out, by calling out Calvinist soteriorology.
    They are definitely appointed by the SBC and the SBC owns 6 seminaries which are funded by the Cooperative Program which also funds the aforementioned foreign missions, etc. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe the trustees of all SBC entities, including the seminaries, are appointed by the President of the SBC. As I understand it, that's how the conservatives took the SBC back from the liberals--electing Presidents who agreed to appoint only inerrantists. Prior to Dr. Mohler's appointment, SBTS was the most liberal seminary of them all.

    He did throw out the Semi-Pelagian card. Given the nature of the SBC I'm not sure what else he could have been expected to do with a blog post. Although SBTS and SEBTS have the Abstract of Principles as their confessional statements, overall the SBC statement of faith is the Baptist Faith and Message. Those working for SBC entities have to affirm it. For the most part, the statement in question here is not necessarily inconsistent with the rather broad BF&M, which seems to me to be at best somewhat shaky on the imputation of Adam's sin. (That was clearly affirmed in the original 1925 version but was watered down in the 1963 version and carried over in 2000.) There are some Calvinists (as well as other Baptists) who could not sign the BF&M, and not simply because it doesn't affirm all 5 points.

    As noted earlier, Dr. Mohler also likely suspects that time is on his side. Relatively few younger leaders signed it, although it appears to have been written by a pastor that is around 40. If the developments over the past few years are any indication, Calvinists and especially those willing to work with them would practically appear to have a hammer lock on control of the convention at this point. Even some of the revivalists that practice what many here would call decisional regeneration want no part of this statement.

    The perception that the Calvinists are "taking over our convention" is why you see this reaction from these "traditionalists." No doubt, there are some who wish they could just kick Calvinists out. But I suspect at this point that they don't have anywhere close to the votes that they would need to ram through some kind of anti-Calvinist statement, especially one that would be binding in any way. Also, due to the organization of the SBC, and particularly the ownership of the seminaries, etc. any split (i.e. without one side or the other just withdrawing) would be a legal nightmare.
    Last edited by Pilgrim; 06-07-2012 at 03:24 PM.
    Chris
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  39. #39
    reaganmarsh is offline. Puritanboard Sophomore
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    Another update: the Florida State Convention's newspaper featured Ascol's article. Brief and helpful.
    Rev. Reagan Marsh, MATS, MDiv (equiv.)
    Pastor-Teacher, Beacon Baptist Church of Albany, GA (since April 2011)
    We are a Southern Baptist Convention church.
    My confessional commitments are the London Baptist Confession (1689) and the Abstract of Principles (1858).
    "The Bible is alive, it speaks to me; it has feet, it runs after me; it has hands, it lays hold of me." -- Luther

  40. #40
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    The SBC Annual meeting is next week, it will be interesting to hear what will come out concerning the document. I hope the conservatives make a stand and squash this attack of the DoG.
    Rick
    Teacher/Apologist
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