Are There Mixed Motives in the Current Outcries Against Paige Patterson?

’What do you fear, lady?’ he asked. ‘A cage,’ she said, ‘To stay behind bars, until use and old age accept them, and all chance of doing great deeds is gone beyond recall or desire.” Lord of the Rings

The Deebs spent hours on the phone today, discussing the Paige Patterson situation. We don’t think the current outcry is as simple as it seems and thought our readers might like to know what we talk about when we look over a situation.

Let’s get this out of the way first. We called for Paige Patterson’s resignation in 2009. We have never deviated from that stand and we believe he should have been gone a long time ago. Are we glad that others are jumping on our lonely bandwagon? Of course we are. But, if our readers think this is a simple *waking up,* we are going to disabuse you of that notion. We want you to contemplate the questions that we have and see if you can come up with some answers to these questions.Nothing is an simple as it looks. Agendas are everywhere.

The petition/letter calling out Patterson’s remarks is ONLY about his remarks regarding the 16 year old girl.

Christianity Today posted Southern Baptist Women Launch Petition Against Paige Patterson.The current count of signatories is 2200.  Deb is not going to sign it because it demands an adherence to strict complementarianism and the Baptist Faith and Message. Plus she doesn’t know who wrote the letter. I cannot since I am no longer a Baptist (something, I confess, which relieves me greatly.) It’s a great idea but there are some notable lacks in this petition.

Christianity Today appears to present this letter as a comprehensive response to Patterson’s remarks. It isn’t. Why?

Patterson, one of the most influential leaders in the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), has faced widespread criticism in recent weeks for old remarks, including a discussion of divorce in cases of abuse and multiple comments on women’s appearances.

“We cannot defend or support Dr. Patterson’s past remarks,” stated an open letter to SWBTS trustees, which grew from 100 to more than 1,000 signatories on Sunday night. “No one should.

“The fact that he has not fully repudiated his earlier counsel or apologized for his inappropriate words indicates that he continues to maintain positions that are at odds with Southern Baptists and, more importantly, the Bible’s elevated view of womanhood,” states the letter. “The [SBC] cannot allow the biblical view of leadership to be misused in such a way.”

You can read the entire letter here. There is something odd about this letter. It has a preface that is not part of the letter. It is in this section that there is link to the woman who had the two black eyes.They do not mention it by description in the actual petition which  they call a letter, like they did the 16 year old woman. The question is “Why is this not in the actual petition?”

Now look at the letter. What are they actually protesting? They are only protesting the ridiculous and demeaning remarks he made about the 16 year old teen. Yes, the Deebs are fully against those specific comments by Patterson but we are concerned about the limited scope of this petition.

We are shocked by the video that has surfaced showing Dr. Paige Patterson objectify a teenage girl and then suggest this as behavior that is biblical. We are further grieved by the dangerous and unwise counsel given by Dr. Patterson to women in abusive situations. His recent remarks of clarification do not repudiate his unwise counsel in the past; nor has he offered explanation or repentance for inappropriate comments regarding a teenage girl, the unbiblical teaching he offered on the biblical meaning of womanhood in that objectification, and the inappropriate nature of his own observations of her body.

What the actual letter does not address.

  • The woman who was abused by her husband,
  • The 25 women whose reports of abuse by Darrell Gilyard PP wouldn’t receive.
  • Why did the members of the Council of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood sat on this information for 19 years? The black eyes quote comes from a conference in 2000.
  • Why are all the Reformed Baptist pastors jumping on board now?

Does everyone signing this letter know they are affirming the gender roles statements of the SBC?

Be sure to read thoroughly what is being signed. Here is a link to that statement.

We are concerned Southern Baptist women who affirm the Baptist Faith and Message 2000, including its statements on the roles of men and women in the family and in the church.

Christianity Today states:

The petition is intended for women at SBC churches who affirm the denomination’s complementarian theology.

Motives are funny things.

A favorite quote of a favorite pastor of mine, Jim Abrahamson, is “Even on my best days, my motives of mixed.* Remember that quote. It will help you as you wander this post evangelical wilderness. It also helps me as I approach confession and communion each week.

Why is that? Calvinists versus Non-Calvinists in a fight for the SBC is a possible motive to help you assess this matter.

Look around at what is going on and always ask “Why?” Here is one example that applies to this particular situation.

The SBC convention will commence in the second week in June. JD Greear, a staunch Calvinist and a big deal in Calvinista circles, has been promised the SBC presidency this year. JD Greear has been extremely supportive of CJ Mahaney which means that abuse issues within the SBC may not be high on his list of priorities.

Enter Ken Hemphill who is the former President of SWBTS (before Paige Patterson.) Hemphill is the leader of the *Billy Graham* wing of the SBC while Greear is a leader of the Calvinist wing. SWBTS is one of the few major Baptist seminaries which does not emphasize Calvinism. Do you doubt the Deebs? Here is a post whose title says it all: Showdown looms over SBC and Calvinism.

From the post:

Showdown looms over SBC and Calvinism

A longtime Southern Baptist leader warns there is a theological civil war brewing over the influence of Calvinist leaders within the denomination.

Richard Land, the former head of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, says he supports Ken Hemphill to lead the SBC as president in order to preserve the gospel message.

…Land tells OneNewsNow that his backing of Hemphill is not an attack on Greear, whom he describes as a great pastor and attractive candidate to lead the SBC.

“This is not an anti-JD campaign,” he says. ” This is a pro-John 3:16 campaign.”

The issue of Calvinism’s influence is the biggest issue facing the Southern Baptist Convention at the moment, Land adds.

What is this telling us? There is an apparent war in the SBC regarding doctrine. I bowed out of these the moment I left the SBC so I don’t have a dog in this hunt any longer. However, there is a war going on. Could it be that the CBMW/TGC/Acts29 faction (read Calvinistas) decided to dredge up these comments by PP not because they really care about abuse but because they have a war to win and this is just one of the skirmishes?

Why is Patterson’s comment about the lady with black eyes statement not in the actual letter?

I have pondered this all day. I don’t know for sure but I wonder if it has something to with views by a number of Christian leaders in the SBC regarding abuse and divorce. Of course, the current trend is to proclaim from the rooftops that one is against abuse and that women should be allowed to separate for safety. However, I know for a fact that some leaders and pastors do not believe divorce is warranted in abuse situations.

There is an underlying belief that the book of Hosea is proscriptive. Women would stay married to abusive spouses because Hosea stayed married to Gomer. We received a number of comments from members of The Village Church who believed that Karen Hinckley should have stayed married to her pedophile husband because the book of Hosea “says so.” We wrote a post about this poor understanding in The Harmful Misuse of Scripture Regarding Divorce Due to Abuse and Infidelity.  John Piper, who holds incredible sway over the thinking of the Calvinistas, is one who does not believe in divorce and remarriage when it comes to abuse.

I think everyone should question their pastors and leaders very carefully on divorce in this situation. I wonder if the reason the lady with the black eyes was not mentioned in the actual letter is due to the awkward questions being raised about divorce in cases of abuse. The fact that this incident was not in the actual body of the letter is disturbing. The actual abuse of a woman is even worse than his stupid, unacceptable remark about a 16 year old teen’s appearances.

Why is no one bringing up the Darrell Gilyard situation?

The Deebs find this even odder. Here we have 25 women who were actually harmed by the actions of Darrell Gilyard. These women were told that Paige Patterson would not hear their complaints unless they EACH brought 2-3 witnesses and physical evidence of their assault!!

If you read the account, Gilyard wet on to other churches due to the inexcusable inaction of Patterson. He continued to molest other women. So the finalcount is far higher, more like 44. Gilyard was eventually arrested and sentenced to three years in prison.

Now, here is where it gets downright despicable. This registers sex offender and ex con is the pastor of a church in Jacksonville Florida where he was able to get the terms of his probation changed so he could preach to children!

Gilyard completed a three-year prison sentence on Dec. 28, 2011. Four weeks later he tookthe pulpit at Christ Tabernacle Baptist Church, prompting community protests and a visit from Jacksonville Baptist Association, which resulted in an agreement that the church would “leave the fellowship” of the Southern Baptist Convention regional affiliate.

Please note that the local SBC group paid a visit to this church and got them to drop out of the regional association of the SBC. I cannot find the church listed now with the SBC. However, it was with the SBC which raises an important question.

  • Did the SBC even reach out to the victims of Darrell Gilyard who tried to report their abuse to Paige Patterson?
  • If not, why not?
  • Is this why they are avoiding this disturbing incident in Paige Patterson’s career?
  • Does the SBC actually care for victims of abuse? I have reason to believe that much of the concern is lip service on social media.

Summation

  • TWW called for the resignation of Paige Patterson years ago and stand by that call today.
  • We believe that there are some who are opportunistically utilizing remarks from 19 years ago for their own purposes.
  • Every member of CBMW who knew about this 19 years ago and sat silently by needs to repent of their inaction.
  • Anyone who is misusing these examples of Patterson’s abusive remarks to score political points needs to repent.
  • Who started the letter to the SWBTS Board? Why didn’t they sign their names?
  • Why were two of the most egregious examples of Patterson’s statements not in the letter?
  • We believe there is some conflict behind the scenes when it comes to allowing divorce for abuse and they avoiding addressing it.

Update regarding the lady with the two black eyes who now claims the media didn’t get the story right.

I was getting ready to post and found this piece of information that was interesting in the Christian Post. I find this statement oy the supposed victim confusing. No one misunderstood anything. We have the audio of what was said so the media so we didn’t get it wrong. This whole thing seems a bit conjured up to me but you can decide for yourselves.

She was angry at me,” Patterson said at the time. “And she said, ‘I hope you’re happy.’ And I said, ‘Yes ma’am, I am.’ And I said, ‘I’m sorry about that, but I’m very happy.'”

Patterson later explained that the husband showed up to church, repented of his actions, and is now “a great husband today.”

After the comments sparked ire from many evangelicals and conservative Christians, with megachurch pastors like Rick Warren to popular evangelists like Beth Moore insisting that abuse is never OK, Patterson clarified that he has “never counseled or condoned abuse of any kind.”

“I will never be a party to any position other than that of the defense of any weaker party when subjected to the threat of a stronger party. This certainly includes women and children,” he added in a statement.

Angie Brock, a real estate agent from Oklahoma, said on Twitter she was the one Patterson was speaking about and that the Southern Baptist leader helped her when she was abused by calling authorities. She suggested his comments may not have been interpreted by the media correctly. The Christian Post reached out to Brock for clarification but has not heard back at press time.

Brock explained that Patterson never suggested that she has to “stick around and get smacked.”

“What he did was bring the authorities, remove my violent husband and encourage me in the Word. Not recommending divorce does not mean approval of abuse,” she revealed.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Comments

Are There Mixed Motives in the Current Outcries Against Paige Patterson? — 414 Comments

  1. First?

    I’m going to suggest that perhaps Angie Brock is not the same woman that Patterson was referring to in his “two black eyes” comments at CBMW. The details are *all wrong*.

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  2. Dee and Wanda,

    Both wings of the SBC – Calvinism and Fundamentalism – battle with the sin of authoritarianism.

    I think Ken Hemphill may be the the winner through all this imbriglio. Why? He was very sympathetic to Sheri Klouda and Karen Bullock and other women in ministry during his tenure at SWBTS.

    You raise good questions about the anonymous letter.

    My sense is Hemphill may end up being helped more by it than J.D. The people with whom you visited on the phone today may have motives too.

    One’s person’s motive is deemed another person’s madness!

    I’m just grateful authoritarianism is having to get into the back seat for a season. There’s still many innings until the game is over.

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  3. “‘Not recommending divorce does not mean approval of abuse,’ she revealed.”

    Interesting. It DOES means staying in an abusive relationship minimally even if not actively or directly being abused.

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  4. First, I just want to say how much I appreciate your willingness to step back and wonder what in the world is going on here. I have to say that, more than once, I have heard that all you care about is ‘getting your man’. You have just proven that to be false.

    Secondly, I agree that something fishy is going one here. But then, I believe that is true far more often than most of us suspect. A couple of your commenters suggest, after having worked in some of these big religious organizations, that these organizations are way ahead of us in P.R., propaganda and shaping the message. Rarely do things ‘just happen’. Sometimes they do; but often, especially when it involves people in ‘high places’ there are people shuffling papers, burning the midnight oil and desperately trying to control the agenda.

    It is no condemnation of the vast majority of unsuspecting Calvinists in the world to point out that there has long been a war going on for the control of the Church by Calvinists of power. The people in the pews are mere pawns in their little game. And Calvinists are not alone. Who knows how many others are playing the exact same sort of game?

    This blog, Christianity Today, Willow Creek Church and every other institution in existence are fair game for these people to use for their own agendas. They can and they do use whoever and whatever they can to secure their own positions, power and wealth.

    Welcome to the world. It is not just the Church. This is how ‘the game’ is played everywhere that money, power and authority are at stake.

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  5. I also am highly suspicious of this supposed woman who was the source of the black eyes story. I heard basically this same story many decades ago, and I am not a Southern Baptist. This is one of those stories pastors share, or pick up in pastors’ magazines. I’m sorry, but I seriously doubt there is such a woman.

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  6. And we do need to take these guys on about divorce. Forcing someone to remain in a marriage, even if ‘allowed’ to seek protection from an emotionally, physically or any other way abusive spouse is abusive. I will say it again – marriage, like any other contract, is conditional. The minute one party breaks their promises, the contract is null and void. Simply because the Institutional Church has been distorting and misinterpreting scripture on the issue of divorce for literally centuries does not mean we cannot call them out on the complete idiocy of their interpretation.

    God is a divorcee. Why? Because it is abuse and injustice that God hates, and that is what Jesus was saying. A proper translation would read that ‘God hates ‘putting away”, which the Pharisees were doing unlawfully, casting off faithful spouses without giving them the proper legal papers of divorcement that would preserve their integrity and allow them to officially remarry. By ‘putting away’ a woman improperly, these men were condemning her to slander and a life of loneliness. This is much the same as today’s Church on divorce. Falsely sentencing men and women to ‘marriage without bail’ for life, people have been compelled to live lives of misery and despair.

    It is time we took this on, and outed the lies once and for all!

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  7. truthseeker00 wrote:

    I also am highly suspicious of this supposed woman who was the source of the black eyes story. I heard basically this same story many decades ago, and I am not a Southern Baptist. This is one of those stories pastors share, or pick up in pastors’ magazines. I’m sorry, but I seriously doubt there is such a woman.

    You and plenty of other people. You all are beginning to convince me!

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  8. Just had a lengthy exchange with a Village Church/Matt Chandler apologist. he kept saying that Chandler has been clear on divorce and abuse. He could not show me one statement that was clear on the matter but claimed all the ague statements were clear. I got tired of the game playing and muted him.

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  9. truthseeker00 wrote:

    I’m sorry, but I seriously doubt there is such a woman.

    Even if the story was a falsified sermon illustration, IMHO, it doesn’t really matter because it’s still damaging to women: Patterson was using it to teach women they should stay in abusive marriages and put up with being hit.

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  10. Yeah, the ‘depends on how frequent and how severe’ assertion. That one nauseates me. I’m sorry, the minute you feel unsafe in your own home – for any reason – is the minute you leave, man or woman. And if you do not have family to go to, and the church rejects you, there are community services for people who do not feel safe. You do not have to wait until there is physical harm.

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  11. If we learned from the investigative reporting in *All the President’s Men* to “Follow the money,” we learned from *Spotlight* to expand that maxim to “Follow the power and protection.” Seems to me, that’s part of how this all shifts from individuals to systems …

    Control over the institutions of this largest Protestant denomination/convention in the U.S. potentially means access to all three: money, power, and protection. There is always much at stake with this organization, and the potential for damage is huge … as those in and around the SBC world observed (or experienced) with the Conservative Resurgence.

    I appreciate that you’re stepping back a bit to observe and analyze, Dee and Deb, and withholding/adjusting interpretation in light of some sketchy stuff that raises legitimate questions. Important to go where the evidence leads, but also to interpret where there are gaps and excesses, red flags and red herrings …

    Anyway, this is an important point for the SBC to potentially go into informed action and clean house — not simply do yet another resolution, this time about abuse/violence.

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  12. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    I’m going to suggest that perhaps Angie Brock is not the same woman that Patterson was referring to in his “two black eyes” comments at CBMW. The details are *all wrong*.

    i agree. either it is the wrong woman or he fabricated his version of the story, which is lying outright. if he had called the authorities he would have boasted in that. Me thinks its p.r. move. and also i wonder, since these Calvinistas cant be seen having verbal exchanges with mere women any more- do they make fake social media accounts under alias’ of women names?

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  13. brad/futuristguy wrote:

    If we learned from the investigative reporting in *All the President’s Men* to “Follow the money,”

    As much as the Deebs discourage discussion of politics here, much of what goes on with these religious leaders reminds me of the corruption, double speak, and hidden motives typical of politicians. Very little should be taken at face value.

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  14. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    First?
    I’m going to suggest that perhaps Angie Brock is not the same woman that Patterson was referring to in his “two black eyes” comments at CBMW. The details are *all wrong*.

    They don’t add up. I thought the same thing. Curiouser and curiouser.

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  15. truthseeker00 wrote:

    And we do need to take these guys on about divorce. Forcing someone to remain in a marriage, even if ‘allowed’ to seek protection from an emotionally, physically or any other way abusive spouse is abusive. I will say it again – marriage, like any other contract, is conditional. The minute one party breaks their promises, the contract is null and void. Simply because the Institutional Church has been distorting and misinterpreting scripture on the issue of divorce for literally centuries does not mean we cannot call them out on the complete idiocy of their interpretation.
    God is a divorcee. Why? Because it is abuse and injustice that God hates, and that is what Jesus was saying. A proper translation would read that ‘God hates ‘putting away”, which the Pharisees were doing unlawfully, casting off faithful spouses without giving them the proper legal papers of divorcement that would preserve their integrity and allow them to officially remarry. By ‘putting away’ a woman improperly, these men were condemning her to slander and a life of loneliness. This is much the same as today’s Church on divorce. Falsely sentencing men and women to ‘marriage without bail’ for life, people have been compelled to live lives of misery and despair.
    It is time we took this on, and outed the lies once and for all!

    I am so glad you shared this in a concise manner. It took me years to understand it because of my own conditioning. It’s time that this message gets out. Churches are twisting and using Scripture to further abuse. Thank you, Truthseeker00

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  16. truthseeker00 wrote:

    I also am highly suspicious of this supposed woman who was the source of the black eyes story. I heard basically this same story many decades ago, and I am not a Southern Baptist. This is one of those stories pastors share, or pick up in pastors’ magazines. I’m sorry, but I seriously doubt there is such a woman.

    This possible explanation makes the most sense. We know that PP had an agenda and fabricating a story to further that agenda would be a good fit.

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  17. Daisy wrote:

    truthseeker00 wrote:

    I’m sorry, but I seriously doubt there is such a woman.

    Even if the story was a falsified sermon illustration, IMHO, it doesn’t really matter because it’s still damaging to women: Patterson was using it to teach women they should stay in abusive marriages and put up with being hit.

    I agree to an extent! Whether true or not, the story serves to illustrate PP’s views. However, if not true then it also illustrates that he is perfectly comfortable with being dishonest in the pulpit. And if dishonest in the pulpit then we can be sure that he will be dishonest out of it too.

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  18. Just to try to be fair I tried to listen to a lot of his sermons online. I am totally biased if these folks told me the earth was round I would be a flat-earther. An aside Dee or Deb you folks should look into the reformed/Calvinist fringe yet not so fringe side and flat earth conspiracies. Even Ken Ham looks sane compared to these folks. But they are serious. Back to PP. I dont see what people see in his teaching, he comes off as a huckster and a shill I mean Bob Lar$on is more entertaining. Really I dont see it. I will admit it might well be me because part of me literally hates these people, which I know is just so wrong and a very serious sin on my part. I want to believe the best that maybe he just went off the rails and there is some real solid Kingdom stuff there I dont see.

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  19. The letter is at http://swbtsletter.com

    Interestingly, whoever wrote it has some technical knowledge.

    A look at WHOIS shows they used Domain Protection Services – so the purchaser/owner/letter writer can’t be traced.

    The url was registered May 5, 2018 and expires next year.

    Signing a website letter without sufficient information such as who/what doesn’t seem wise.

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  20. truthseeker00:
    I also am highly suspicious of this supposed woman who was the source of the black eyes story. I heard basically this same story many decades ago, and I am not a Southern Baptist. This is one of those stories pastors share, or pick up in pastors’ magazines. I’m sorry, but I seriously doubt there is such a woman.

    I thought the same thing the first time I heard it. Still do.

    I bet it’s a composite of several women PP has counseled over the years.

    PP was trying to prove how opposed he is to divorce and threw this hyperbole out there to show it.

    PP’s weakness here is his stubbornness. He can’t just say, “Yes, that was an extreme, poorly thought out illustration that I would not use again.” So, we get several clarifications that still don’t seem clear and satisfying.

    Of course the Gilyard and Klouda matters are real events.

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  21. Bene D,

    Are you suggesting that this wasn’t authored by, “Women of the SBC” but rather men using women as pawns for power motives? If so, that is a new low. The SBC women as the straw man? The affirming of subordination certainly makes it suspect.

    The list also seems to me a target… Or in the words of Mark Dever “an easy target for church discipline.” Here’s Patterson and Dever scheming together about “easy targets.” They’re practically giddish about it… https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=22IfJ3OzRbY Dangerous and Scheming characters – both of them. When the dust settles the 9marks crickets will come out with a 1, 2, 3 get ‘em plan for church pastors for every unsuspecting soul all while they gleefully go ringing their hands together and saying, “Aaaaah, the plan worked perfectly!“

    I think Jesus talked about a greater condemnation for people like this. And I think the word Mill Stone came into play.

    Who’s scheming whom at this point?! I am but one foot out of the SBC kingdom.

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  22. Well on the upside of things, it does substantiate the power of the curse where men will want to rule over women and where women will yearn to get all their needs met in a man…who by the curse, will want to enately rule over women, I.e. power structures.

    If we are indeed, “redeemed from the curse” men and women, can we not just live like it?!

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  23. I left the SBC because of many of these things, so I didn’t even read the whole letter.

    Even if one SBC bigwig incited their wife into writing the letter and the others signed it not knowing, it still could be a political move.

    (TGBTC–My quote/reply buttons aren’t showing up. Hopefully, it’s just the morning update time and not a big deal.)

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  24. ___

    A brutal cultural war has progressively entered the American Church for some time now. The stakes are high. If kind folk were to bring up the individual issues, and discussed them,IMHO, they would be banned from future posting comments here at Wartburg Watch.This culture war has become that bad. ( In a particularly personal interesting situation —all my comments here have already been placed in a temporary holding pattern, and that for about four years now…) Aparrently, Wartburg Watch is not the place to entertain practical viable solutions to the overall problems the Church is facing today. TBD.

    ATB

    Sòpy

    🙁

    – –

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  25. Allow me to make an observation…

    I perused the list of signatures, paying close attention to the ones representing churches in our area (Raleigh/Durham, NC).

    The churches associated with this petition are PREDOMINANTLY in the Neo-Cal camp.

    Interestingly, I did see one signature from a Raleigh church in the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. 🙂

    This data appears to back up what the post contends.

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  26. Nan,

    I’m not at all surprised since Rachael has previously been a member of a Reformed Baptist church in the Louisville area. My initial reaction upon hearing about the petition was that I would gladly sign it.

    Now that I believe Dee and I have figured out the true intent of the petition, I will NOT be signing it.

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  27. Wade Burleson,

    Until women are accepted into the pastorate, authoritarianism will never be truly eradicated. The President of the Baptist Union of the United Kingdom is Rev Diane Tidball, a theologically conservative woman. As Baptists believe in local church government, the priesthood of all believers, and soul competency, each church in the UK Baptist Union chooses whether to allow women in leadership roles or not. Many do, including the two churches we attended for many years. Even Thomas Helwys proposed women as deacons at least. How would Anne Askew be viewed by these fellows, who enjoy luxurious lives of dominance over others while being assured of great personal safety? Should she have remained silent? I am getting tired of complementarianism and its restrictions on the work of the Kingdom. I thank God for my husband who is a committed egalitarian and the 50 years we have been walking the pilgrim way together. The wrong interpretations of certain passages, which patriarchialists take to prevent women from being pastors and enforce male ‘headship’ in the marriage relationship, now make me tired and unable to join a SBC church, while remaining a committed Baptist, as far as doctrine and church governance are concerned.

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  28. Deb,

    Good! I was scrolling through KY signees interested in seeing which churches were most represented. Rachael surprised me since she seems so keyed in to the politics.

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  29. Deb,

    And I’m so glad that the authors of the petition (who hide in anonymity) provided a place for church names. It’s so much more useful than just a list of names. 😉

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  30. It looks to me like the situation with the abused woman was alluded to in a couple of places, though not explicated on. Perhaps they should have.

    They would have done better to have mentioned the Gilyard debacle, however. After expounding at length on why Christians should never go to the secular authorities with allegations of abuse and/or criminal behavior, Patterson has managed to disprove that notion all on his own.

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  31. The “lived prophecy” of Hosea’s pursuit of adulterous Gomer is an image of YHWH’s relentless pursuit of His people. It’s a head-scratcher to see this used as prescriptive rule in marriage counseling.

    But if you are going to get your theology of marriage out of Old Testament narratives, replete as they are with ancient cultural practices, what do you do with the polygyny of heroes of faith like Abraham and David? Adultery is a capital offense under the Mosaic covenant, but we never see this charge brought against Israelite polygynists.

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  32. No question there is a Cal/anti-Cal war on…the anti-Cals have declared intent to elect likeminded folks year-after-year-after-year. If this is some strategem to assist JDG it is monumentally stupid. Besides, lots of non-Cals, including the current president have expressed support for Greear.

    I don’t think the lady from OK is old enough to be the one PP was speaking of, 1964 or so.

    “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after controversy and acrimony, because in the SBC they will surely be satisfied.” – Actual SBC Beatitude

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  33. I appreciate the post. Undoubtedly there is something amiss. “Lack of candor” for sure, in who is behind the letter.

    It does bring to mind the story of Thaddeus Stevens in the Lincoln movie. A staunch abolitionist. He thought slavery was demeaning because he believed all human beings were the same. He hated racism and was very principled. When it came time to pass the 13th Amendment to end slavery he argued quite against his principles that he was only arguing for passage of the amendment in the eyes of the law. That he was not arguing for the equality of all human beings. His allies were appalled. They accused him of selling out. He retorted that he had fought to long and hard to see the amendment fail. If he could get it passed he would say anything.

    I think we should sign. It doesn’t tarnish us to call for Patterson’s firing because we may disagree with those behind it. We can still fight those who may have bad motives later. Patterson needs to go and the other “leaders” with similar views need to be put on notice. These things are unacceptable in the body of Christ.

    I agree entirely that there needs to be a reckoning with the people who knew he was going to speak back in 2000, who let him speak, who sat there listening to him give this atrocious advice and did not immediately denounce it or issue a statement about not sending an abused woman back to her abuser. They need to be held accountable also. There is time for that later.

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  34. Augustine: Or in the words of Mark Dever “an easy target for church discipline.” Here’s Patterson and Dever scheming together about “easy targets.” They’re practically giddish about it…

    It’s the 3d guy in the video, Matt Schmucker, who recommended churches 1st “discipline” the very lowest hanging fruit– that which is 6 feet under! “This outer-most ring should be the easiest to clean up. At you church’s next meeting for conducting business, put these names before the congregation with a motion to remove them from membership in the following meeting. Don’t ask the congregation to immediately remove these names, but give them time to think about the motion.”
    The church secretary can’t simply remove dead folks’ names– pewsitters have to vote on it after having time to think about it!

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  35. Lance,

    Lance, needless to say, challenging this – or any – Orthodox Church teaching is frowned upon, and does not receive much encouragement – or publication. (At least we no longer get burned at the stake!)
    http://www.totalhealth.bz/Dan-Knight-divorce-and-marriage.pdf is a good place to begin one’s study.

    My guess is that the Church’s teaching on divorce has been challenged much more often than we will ever know, because the press is controlled by the institutions in power. I have always been confused by the apparent contradictions in scripture concerning divorce and what constitutes a scripturally legal marriage or divorce. I believe that much understanding is lost when we do not understand – as we have not been taught by ‘The Church’ – that what was being exposed by Jesus and his apostles was the difference between ‘The Law of Moses’ and the Rabbinic Law, which had added much to God’s Word. The Pharisees and Sadducees upheld and taught the Rabbinic Law, whereas Jesus defended the biblical Law of Moses. That, once again, is my ‘common sense’ understanding vs. what one is ‘taught’ as ‘the true meaning’ of scripture. My layman’s research backs up this understanding, suggesting that the battle between the Pharisees and Sadducees was essentially a battle between the two leading Rabbinic schools. Jesus defended neither school, but presented the Law of Moses as prescribed by his Father. ‘You have heard it said’ represents the interpretation of the Law of Moses by the chief Rabbis. Jesus presented the true intention of the Law of Moses, by its author, who was God, not Moses.

    As is the case today, it is not so much the words that are changed (Although our ever morphing translations have certainly allowed for some word chicanery!) as the ‘official’ interpretations of those words authoritatively handed down from The Church.

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  36. I’m so glad to see this post. I am deeply cynical about this media “outrage” against Patterson. I think he’s disgusting, but no more so now than 5 or 10 or 15 years ago. His comments have been well known for a very long time. If the motivation if to shame or reject leaders with horrible, damaging words to Christian women, why not include John Piper? Doug Wilson (although not SBC)? Many others who use CBMW ideas as a weapon against women?
    I have thought that this is a power play in the SBC against Patterson. Is it opportunism on the part of Calvinists in the SBC? Noting that his fellow architect of the CR, Judge Pressler has gotten some pretty bad press lately too, could it even be some payback for past battles?
    The fact that I even feel the need to speculate about such nasty politics is enough to keep me and my children and my tithes away from the SBC. Well, that along with the fact that I’m just a woman.

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  37. Amy Smith:
    Where is the outrage about John Piper who gavethe same advice as Patterson? Piper said a woman should endure abuse for a season and getting smacked around for a night. That advice could be deadly. https://youtu.be/3OkUPc2NLrM

    Totally agree with this. It’s telling that so few are making this connection if the motivation is truly protecting women.

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  38. The events behind the original incident of the woman with two black eyes, be it Angie Brock, someone else, or a composite of her story and others’, are irrelevant to the issues at hand. The fact is that that Paige Patterson frequently told this as a parable as to either how ministers should counsel in this situation (passive aggressive prayer that could ignite more abuse) or how women should respond in this situation (endure abuse.. divorce is not an option), depending on the audience. When recently challenged on these issues, PP essentially lied about what he had said before and lashed out at others for “misrepresenting” his position.

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  39. Deb,

    I would never suggest that anyone violate their conscience.
    I do understand what you are saying. I am not going to let it get in my way.
    In fairness Deb, I am going to have to brush up on just what changed between the two Baptist Faith and Message. Honestly, I attend a SB church. I don’t pay a lot of attention to the higher ups. I think I can in good conscience disagree with “lofty” statements of the SBC and still serve faithfully in my local self governed baptist church. It is my understanding that they wrote the 2000 BFM so vague as to be able to drive a semi truck through it. If I recall they brag about that. But that may have been on a different issue than woman and authority.

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  40. It could be stranger…

    “TELEVANGELIST JIM BAKKER SUGGESTS THAT IF YOU WANT TO SURVIVE THE END OF DAYS, THE BEST THING YOU COULD DO IS BUY ONE OF HIS CABINS IN MISSOURI’S OZARK MOUNTAINS. AND WHILE YOU’RE AT IT, BE SURE TO PICK UP SIX 28-OUNCE “EXTREME SURVIVAL WARFARE” WATER BOTTLES FOR $150.”

    http://www.nowtheendbegins.com/false-teacher-jim-bakker-selling-cabins-in-the-ozark-mountains-as-safest-place-to-survive-the-apocalypse/

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  41. Ken A: But that may have been on a different issue than woman and authority.

    Exactly. The truth being driven through it was the Reformed versus nonReformed thing. The dang thing recalled female missionaries who had *authority* over men in the mission field.Read the history on this. We also wrote about it when we first got started.

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  42. FW Rez,

    I totally agree. But the more I think about it, the real story here may be that no one called him out before now. This was not some backwoods preacher, he’s the president of an SBC seminary! Offerings of faithful Baptists have paid for his retirement home and his own stained glass window! The fact that he has not been challenged by other leaders before now highlights the deeply entrenched misogyny among these “power players.” How in the world can I take seriously anything this group has to say about women in any setting?!?

    Sorry, FW, just jumping off your post. My angst is not directed at you at all. Just feeling the effects of lots of years of trying to twist myself into a role that was never meant for me.

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  43. Bene D:
    The letter is at http://swbtsletter.com
    Interestingly, whoever wrote it has some technical knowledge.A look at WHOIS shows they used Domain Protection Services – so the purchaser/owner/letter writer can’t be traced.
    The url was registered May 5, 2018 and expires next year.
    Signing a website letter without sufficient information such as who/what doesn’t seem wise.

    Darn, this is good! Thank you.

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  44. Caroline,

    And let’s not forget Bruce Ware (Southern Seminary professor) who appears to blame the wife for abuse when she does not ‘properly’ submit.

    https://cryingoutforjustice.com/2016/08/22/bruce-ware-teaches-that-a-wifes-lack-of-submission-threatens-her-husbands-authority-and-he-responds-to-this-threat-by-abusing-her/

    The complementarian view holds that God created us as men and women with a design in which, yes, we are equal in essence, we both are fully human, male and female, equally image of God. And yet, God designed that there be an authority and submission relationship in that male/female structure. So that God intended in creation for there to be male headship in the relationship between Adam and woman in the garden, and he [Adam] had authority, he had ultimate responsibility.

    What happens in sin is that that very wise and good plan of God, of male headship, is sought to be overturned — as women now (as sinners) want instead to have their way, instead of submitting to their husbands to do what they would like to do — and [women] seek to work to have their husbands fulfill their will, rather than serving them.

    And the husbands on their part (because they’re sinners) now respond to that threat to their authority either by being abusive —which is, of course, one of the ways men can respond when their authority is challenged — or, more commonly, to become passive, acquiescing and simply not asserting the leadership they ought to as men in their homes and in churches.

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  45. It would be perfect irony to stumble over a less then acurate, composite sermon illustration. The story felt like a wannabe urban legend. Also ironic, is that it can never be proved or disproved, if it never happened as discribed.

    It of course is surpassed by the Niagra Falls wheelbarrow highwire guy.

    The purpose of a sermon (rhetoric) is to instruct, delight and move. Two of these are emotional, not factual. The first, is to instruct in the proper way to think. That is, to submit to the teacher’s think. Again, it’s largely an emotion connection to a way of thinking, not so much the act of thought itself.

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  46. Deb,

    Yes, Bruce Ware is just as bad in my mind. Can we start a letter/petition that includes Piper and Ware? How far to you think that would go? Lol

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  47. Deb: as women now (as sinners) want instead to have their way, instead of submitting to their husbands to do what they would like to do — and [women] seek to work to have their husbands fulfill their will, rather than serving them.

    That line of reasoning is assuming that man’s will is automatically always the same as God’s will. Nope. There’s a reason the Bible warns us that there’s a way that seems right to a man but the end is death.

    So the question for Bruce is what happens when man’s will differs from God’s will?

    Bruce is rebelling against Phil 2:13 which makes it clear that God is working inside women to do God’s will. Women being willful can actually be obedience to God. Something Bruce will never accept.

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  48. Caroline: The fact that he has not been challenged by other leaders before now highlights the deeply entrenched misogyny among these “power players.”

    I’ve have been following numerous sites since Patterson was recently forced to make a response. One of the major take-aways is the realization as to how much the SBC really is an insiders club of good ol’ boys. Example: two of trustees that brought PP to SWBTS ended up as Deans under his administration. Another realization is to be aghast at how revered he his. Way too many people getting drunk on the SBC KoolAid. Now I’m the one pivoting off your post to rant!

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  49. The motives here are mixed, but I do not see them as nefarious. They are heartfelt, in my opinion.

    But for those who are jumping on the band wagon now (you, Wade, and others who have spoken out for years – are excused), it repeats a familiar pattern.

    Many of the guys in the SBC, especially the young Reformed crowd, are particularly susceptible to public pressure. They desperately seek the approval of those in their generation and especially intellectuals.

    In the last part of the 19th Century and the early part of the 20th Century, pastors, theologians and others who were opposed to the continued theological decline in major schools and denominations stood out in opposition. I do not agree with many of them, but they were courageous people. Think of Moody, Bob Jones, most of the SBC (though not the ascending intelligentsia), John Rice, Lee Roberson, J. Gresham Machen, and others from almost every Christian tradition.

    These people walked away from power, knew they were walking away from power, and suffered great ridicule for most of their lives.

    I believe that many of the young, Reformed guys hold convictions that go against the grain, so I give them a plus for that. But I note a tendency in that crowd to quickly jump on any societal trends or issues (which does not offend traditional Christian positions) which are promoted by the larger culture. They often do so while poking and belittling Christians who disagree. The young, Reformed crowd see themselves as representatives of a true Christianity, and they see Christians of other stripes as rubes and nabobs. Often they accuse them of racism or nativism.

    Paige Patterson is a complete embarrassment to them. They want to be part of the #MeToo movement, and since Patterson is the subject, they have attacked and will continue to attack.

    But as you and others have noticed, there is a lot of rhetoric and there are a lot of positions they hold (or have held), that they do not want discussed. As long as Patterson is the target, they will tweet, blog, and speak out.

    But if their heroes, John Piper, John MacArthur, Al Mohler, Danny Akin, Russell Moore and others ever become the targets, it will be interesting to watch – not in the short run, but over the long run.

    My own sense is that these guys are convictional about gender issues, but I also believe they have some suppressed embarrassment over their views. Time will tell how devoted they are to these principles.

    Regardless, while I do not agree with some of the actions of Paige Patterson, I do not believe they disqualify him from finishing out his tenure. More importantly, I believe in the framework of SBC organizational leadership that vests decisions about leadership in the Trustees of the various entities.

    I do not believe in leadership by Tweet.

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  50. Thersites: these religious leaders reminds me of the corruption, double speak, and hidden motives typical of politicians.

    Worse, really. Most politicians have college degrees, training, and real jobs at some point.

    Clergy, OTOH, as they are not tentmakers like Paul, have to gather and guarantee a following to assure their wage. Unfortunate, the way the system is set up, that they volunteer for and a system that they keep in place. Hoping to strike it big like Hybels or Olsteen. As they mold their ministry for a following and thus for the paycheck, eventually it wanders from the truth, derails and looks nothing like Jesus.

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  51. For what it’s worth, I offer a perspective from an old guy who has been a Southern Baptist for 60+ years. But you need to know before I post it that I may be biased because I love Jesus more than the SBC.

    Over the decades, I have observed multiple theo-political wars over this and that; Southern Baptists are well know for always fighting about something. But, I stayed faithful to the denomination because most of SBC’s 45,000 churches continued to ignore skirmishes between national leaders and stayed true to a John 3:16 Gospel message for ALL people. You could walk into the average SBC church and hear a clear call to the Cross of Christ. This was the predominant default belief and practice for Southern Baptist for over 150 years … until the New Calvinist movement.

    In the last 20 years, there has been a progressive Calvinization of the denomination. Most SBC entities are now lead by New Calvinists – leading seminaries, home and foreign mission agencies, publishing house, church planting program, with a growing number of “traditional” churches surrendering to the movement.

    Which brings me to my humble opinion about the matter at hand. I am not a Paige Patterson fan – he has said and done some things I don’t agree with – but I truly believe that the new reformers sense that he is an injured big fish in the SBC sea and the sharks are circling. It is an opportune time for the kill. SWBTS awaits a new president – a New Calvinist leader there would add one more jewel to their crown. This is a Calvinist vs. non-Calvinist thing, pure and simple. Authoritarian patriarchal behavior is resident in both factions – each group have their own ugly examples; using that as the primary motivator here is only a mask for the real driver, which is control of the SBC by the New Calvinists. Taking down Patterson would be huge!

    It would be presumptuous to speak for God on issues such as this, but His Word has some counsel for Southern Baptists in this regard:

    “If you bite and devour one another [in bickering and strife], watch out that you [along with your entire fellowship] are not consumed by one another.” (Galatians 5:15)

    After 60+ years, it’s sad to witness a once-great denomination come apart, with its gifting of evangelism forfeited.

    Jesus wept.

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  52. Forrest:
    truthseeker00 wrote:

    This possible explanation makes the most sense.We know that PP had an agenda and fabricating a story to further that agenda would be a good fit.

    Oh, but if you watch and listen to the video, PP is dead-dog serious when he tells that story!

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  53. dee,

    You are going to have to help me. I have laid the two one on the top of each other in the section on family, husband and wife in the same script and size and they appear to be word for word the same. Where is the “authority” that changed.
    Oh, please excuse me if I seem able to state one thing and mean another. I have been around seminary professors far longer than I should have and have picked up some bad habits.
    I affirm the BFM!

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  54. This post raises questions about the motives of those who started the on-line petition against Paige Patterson. In the SBC political arena, there are currently several items at stake which this could have an impact on:
    1. Will the next president of the SBC be Calvinist of not?
    2. Will Paige Patterson be allowed to speak, as scheduled, at the convention in June?
    3. How will the SWBTS trustees respond to the controversy surrounding their president?
    4. Who will succeed Paige Patterson, whether he be removed or retire?

    Regardless of the motive of those designing the petition, I have made some conclusions based on some of the names on the petition:
    1. There are some well meaning people who truly want Paige Patterson removed for the reasons stated, i.e. Dr. Rachelle Burleson.
    2. There are some brave people signing this, knowing there can be repercussions, i.e. current SWBTS student.
    3. There are some people associated with a church with a poor track record concerning women in untenable situations, i.e. Village Church.
    4. Lots of people want their voice to be heard, even if it means ignoring instructions, such as being a woman, being a Southern Baptist, etc.
    5. Someone had a good sense of humor putting Dorothy Patterson’s name on there (now removed).
    6. Some people are very disrespectful of others having a voice by trying to make comments in the church and city fields.
    7. While one would assume that such a petition could not be ignored by the SWBTS trustees the likelihood is that they will disregard it. They are PP loyalists. That’s how they got there in the first place.

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  55. brad/futuristguy: Control over the institutions of this largest Protestant denomination/convention in the U.S. potentially means access to all three: money, power, and protection. There is always much at stake with this organization, and the potential for damage is huge … as those in and around the SBC world observed (or experienced) with the Conservative Resurgence.

    Time to walk back these posers as icons. That is what is happening with Cosby, big time:

    https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/bill-cosby-kennedy-center-awards-revoked_us_5af18709e4b0c4f19326be95

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  56. Caroline:
    I’m so glad to see this post. I am deeply cynical about this media “outrage” against Patterson. I think he’s disgusting, but no more so now than 5 or 10 or 15 years ago. His comments have been well known for a very long time. If the motivation if to shame or reject leaders with horrible, damaging words to Christian women, why not include John Piper? Doug Wilson (although not SBC)? Many others who use CBMW ideas as a weapon against women?
    I have thought that this is a power play in the SBC against Patterson. Is it opportunism on the part of Calvinists in the SBC? Noting that his fellow architect of the CR, Judge Pressler has gotten some pretty bad press lately too, could it even be some payback for past battles?
    The fact that I even feel the need to speculate about such nasty politics is enough to keep me and my children and my tithes away from the SBC. Well, that along with the fact that I’m just a woman.

    There are/were many others high is SBC ranks who have made demeaning remarks about women – Adrian Rogers, Bailey Smith, Steve Gaines, etc…….. They are/were just not as crass and aggressive as PP.

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  57. Ken A:
    Deb,

    I would never suggest that anyone violate their conscience.
    I do understand what you are saying. I am not going to let it get in my way.
    In fairness Deb, I am going to have to brush up on just what changed between the two Baptist Faith and Message. Honestly, I attend a SB church. I don’t pay a lot of attention to the higher ups.I think I can in good conscience disagree with “lofty” statements of the SBC and still serve faithfully in my local self governed baptist church. It is my understanding that they wrote the 2000 BFM so vague as to be able to drive a semi truck through it. If I recall they brag about that. But that may have been on a different issue than woman and authority.

    You are a man, so I’m sure you can blow off higher and serve. But, if you could only take a walk in a woman’s shoes, you might be singing a different tune.

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  58. Godbeforemen,

    One of the reasons that I am drawn to TWW is that it can be a refuge for those of us who have been disenfranchised from where we formerly felt we belonged, be it a particular church, denomination, or institution. The choice to attend SWBTS was one of the most pivotal in my life. Now it is unrecognizable to me.

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  59. I’m sure that many people have an agenda in this. Read the articles on SBCVoices (mostly Calvinsts) – they are 99% anti PP. Read SBCToday (mostly traditionalists) – they are 99% pro PP.

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  60. Some thoughts as I reviewed the ‘Open Letter’:
    I perused through the names and churches on the signature list and, in the greater Research Triangle area, the usual suspects (churches) were well represented. As Deb mentioned, I was a little surprised to see Hayes Barton. Is this a harbinger of an impending ‘takeover’? My prognosticating skills are rather poor, so I will wait and see.

    One of the (presumably) female signees from the Summit has the last name of Ashford…I wonder if she is married to a certain Bruce Ashford? There was no signee bearing the last name of Greear, but I do not know Mrs. Greear’s maiden name.

    Another observation, in the Rocky Mount/Nashville area, where I now live, there were signatures representing the three area churches that have been ‘featured’ by our blog queens; one person from FBC Rocky Mount signed twice.

    Final thought for this thread – Prior to the recent brouhaha, I wonder how many of the people who ‘signed’ the petition (as I am not sure one can truly call typing ones name into a form a signature) would have been able to identify Patterson in a police-style line-up? My guess would be less than half. So I am left with a line from Jewel’s song “Foolish Games” echoing in my head – You were fashionably sensitive but too cool to care.

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  61. Bene D: Signing a website letter without sufficient information such as who/what doesn’t seem wise.

    No it doesn’t. But it is a very normal response for blind following the blind.

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  62. truthseeker00: This is much the same as today’s Church on divorce. Falsely sentencing men and women to ‘marriage without bail’ for life, people have been compelled to live lives of misery and despair.
    And others see this, and wonder “If THAT’s what being married is like, I want no part of it!”

    No wonder churches came up with “Salvation by Marriage Alone”, giving Marrieds all sorts of special privileges, and treating Singles like dirt or pervs. It’s the only way ANYONE would get married in such an environment.

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  63. Statement by Rick Patrick, SBCToday (In response to a commentor who believes Russ Moore should be Pres of SWBTS) : “The Board of Trustees must not terminate the Father of the Conservative Resurgence. Southern Baptists owe Dr. Patterson a great debt of gratitude. He should be allowed to determine the timing and manner of his resignation.”

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  64. I scrolled through the list. Several people were male. The majority of signers were east of the Rockies. I did find an interesting reason that one woman stated in the place where churches were noted, “hands of her ex husband because of views like Dr Pattersons.” That said enough. I want to believe that signers are sincere and want to see this put right, but it may be that there is confusion and/or deception. Time will tell.
    I would love to see these men hung out to dry for the damage they have caused and are still causing. But this isn’t a perfect world. So, we continue to pray, to pull off the masks to reveal the truth, support each victim, and leave the justice to the courts and ultimately to the Lord.

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  65. FW Rez: The choice to attend SWBTS was one of the most pivotal in my life. Now it is unrecognizable to me.

    I wonder if it is unrecognizable to God? Has God made the decision to leave this outfit? Has God divorced them – those who do not believe in divorce? Does God even “know” them now?

    from Psalm 1:
    “The wicked are not so, but they are like chaff which the wind drives away.
    “Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.
    “For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.”

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  66. Deb is not going to sign it because it demands an adherence to strict complementarianism and the Baptist Faith and Message.

    This is very strange, how much it seems to have been limited. I can think of charitable and non-charitable reasons for this.

    Isn’t an ex Baptist’s view on this of worth here? Isn’t an egalitarians? Isn’t anyone’s? Limiting these things to only men like Patterson is part of the issue in the SBC to began with.

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  67. Lea: Isn’t an ex Baptist’s view on this of worth here? Isn’t an egalitarians? Isn’t anyone’s?

    I assumed that they were trying to limit it to the constituency that the trustees are accountable to. Unfortunately, I think the only constituent the trustees are concerned about is Paige Patterson.

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  68. “Angie Brock, a real estate agent from Oklahoma, said on Twitter she was the one Patterson was speaking about and that the Southern Baptist leader helped her when she was abused by calling authorities. ”

    This was strange mostly because she said she *was* the woman he was speaking about…but her story bears no resemblance to what he actually said.

    It could be he helped her and that would be great. I completely disagree that you can truly help abused women without accepting that divorce is a possibility, maybe even best. I don’t need to know her whole story or anything, but without it what are we supposed to think of this really.

    It doesn’t ultimately matter, because the story he told is the story he told. Made up or not. This is the information he wanted to convey, go home, watch your husband get ‘more violent’ based on his advice, and maybe magically he’ll come to church and it will be all better! That’s terrible advice, no matter what ‘really’ happened.

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  69. truthseeker00: I’m sorry, but I seriously doubt there is such a woman.

    Whether such a woman exists or no, is not relevant (in a real sense) to Patterson’s bloviating on the subject.

    Patterson ignored common decency and issued downright dangerous and irresponsible statements to scores if not hundreds of Southern Baptist women who may live with violent abusers.

    Had one of them been beaten to death in the ensuing idiocy, he’d have blood on his hands.

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  70. As for the politics, I see different wings shaking out.

    The Patterson wing seems to be dying, so they are going for the kill.

    You have the Calvinists of course, but you also have different camps reforming.

    There seems to be a wing that is interested in promoting racial equality and recognizing some of the wrongs done to women. You have Russell Moore here weirdly saying yes you can divorce for abuse, and Thabati reaching out to beth moore and beth moore reaching out on the racial equality front. There was a big MLK thing recently.

    Then you still have the Piper wing, which is all about ‘separation’. These are comp guys and Calvinists. The others are too, but they seem to be doing a different thing. It’s very interesting, although like you I no longer have a dog in this fight except as a former Baptist who wishes they weren’t a total mess on women. I was talking to someone about not being Baptist anymore and the first comment was that Baptists don’t go for interracial which I thought was interesting.

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  71. jyjames: I wonder if it is unrecognizable to God? Has God made the decision to leave this outfit? Has God divorced them – those who do not believe in divorce? Does God even “know” them now?

    I know a lot of godly people that are associated with SWBTS. The students grew up in a convention that admired PP for saving it from the evils of liberalism. They see “Biblical Inerrancy” as a motto more than as a code word for “fundamentalist”. I overheard recently where one wise Dilday era graduate pointed out to a young lady the religion course she was taking used to be taught by one of the most popular teachers on campus, a woman. I don’t think the young lady had any perspective as to how loaded that comment was.

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  72. brad/futuristguy: I appreciate that you’re stepping back a bit to observe and analyze, Dee and Deb, and withholding/adjusting interpretation in light of some sketchy stuff that raises legitimate questions.

    I think observation is great. And it’s good to point out that it doesn’t change the fact that Patterson should be gone.

    But we should talk about what else needs changing, because this one person is only a tiny part of the problem overall. People listened to him, approved him, didn’t challenge him. And they should have.

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  73. Muff Potter: Whether such a woman exists or no, is not relevant (in a real sense) to Patterson’s bloviating on the subject.

    Patterson ignored common decency and issued downright dangerous and irresponsible statements to scores if not hundreds of Southern Baptist women who may live with violent abusers.

    Had one of them been beaten to death in the ensuing idiocy, he’d have blood on his hands.

    Just another sacrificial lamb.

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  74. FW Rez,

    “The events behind the original incident of the woman with two black eyes, be it Angie Brock, someone else, or a composite of her story and others’, are irrelevant to the issues at hand.

    The fact is that that Paige Patterson frequently told this as a parable as to either how ministers should counsel in this situation ”
    ++++++++++++++++++

    i expect many (to the 10th power) have been influenced by his words, and many have responded women in a similar fashion. of course they have.

    i am regularly amazed at the things professional christians with a public platform rattle off. they know they have influence. (I observe them enjoying it very much).

    considering the implications of the things they say, they are either incredibly careless, or else they fully intended to convey them — which makes them totally messed up morally and ethically.

    christian culture has moved from embarrassing & stupid to dangerous.

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  75. From the main article up top:

    A favorite quote of a favorite pastor of mine, Jim Abrahamson, is “Even on my best days, my motives of mixed.* Remember that quote. It will help you as you wander this post evangelical wilderness. It also helps me as I approach confession and communion each week.

    I know a Lutheran pastor (ELCA) who said this same thing some years back when I attended his Church. I don’t think I fully understood it then and I’m at a loss even now.
    Do you have a link maybe to Abrahamson or to some to other source which explains this concept (even on my best day) with clarity?
    Much appreciated and thanks!

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  76. Divorce Minister,

    In the case of our daughter, it meant that she would be permitted to separate for a time (not more than 6 weeks) in order for them to have couples marriage counseling (which she had already endured for 9 years) and then she would be required to go back into the abusive marriage. Her ex would of course put on his “repentance act” and from the point of view of the church it would be a success story. “Allowing separation for abuse” is a misrepresentation of the reality of what happens… in the end the abused wife is forced to return. The goal is always to get them back together under the same roof. They also misrepresent the idea that God only allows divorce for adultery. In reality, if the immoral spouse “repents” then the abused wife is required to forgive and return.

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  77. truthseeker00:

    My layman’s research backs up this understanding, suggesting that the battle between the Pharisees and Sadducees was essentially a battle between the two leading Rabbinic schools. Jesus defended neither school, but presented the Law of Moses as prescribed by his Father. ‘You have heard it said’ represents the interpretation of the Law of Moses by the chief Rabbis. Jesus presented the true intention of the Law of Moses, by its author, who was God, not Moses.

    i.e. Jesus was returning them to the original source documents, ha-Torah.
    Giving a Reality Check to all the accreted Rabbinical rulings.

    Not that these rulings were originally bad things; as guardians and interpreters of ha-Torah, the Rabbis had to make specific interpretations as new situations arose. (Think of Supreme Court decisions in this country — someone had to make a ruling.)

    The danger in that is that such interpretations (and interpretations of those interpretations) can accumulate and bend things beyond recognition or original/actual intent. The danger is when the accumulated edifice of Law becomes a pen-twirling abstract game and the Man the Sabbath was made for gets thrown under its bus.

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  78. Muff Potter: Whether such a woman exists or no, is not relevant (in a real sense) to Patterson’s bloviating on the subject.

    Patterson ignored common decency and issued downright dangerous and irresponsible statements to scores if not hundreds of Southern Baptist women who may live with violent abusers.

    Had one of them been beaten to death in the ensuing idiocy, he’d have blood on his hands.

    Nancy2 (aka Kevlar): Just another sacrificial lamb.

    Another egg cracked for the Perfect Omelet.
    Insignificant.

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  79. elastigirl: christian culture has moved from embarrassing & stupid to dangerous.

    Like a bureaucracy descending from Lawful Neutral through Lawful Stupid into Lawful Evil as Entropy does its thing.

    “Is there no steepness to the stairs of Hell?”
    — G.K.Chesterton, I don’t remember the title of the poem

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  80. Grainne: The wrong interpretations of certain passages, which patriarchialists take to prevent women from being pastors and enforce male ‘headship’ in the marriage relationship, now make me tired and unable to join a SBC church, while remaining a committed Baptist, as far as doctrine and church governance are concerned.

    I left the SBC for similar reasons and now attend a Presbyterian church. So many of us are former Baptists or other churches like them, who have probably retained a lot of Baptist thinking on theology and polity.

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  81. Beth74:
    truthseeker00,
    That was exactly my thought. Pharisees vs. Saducees.

    Both quite impressed with themselves. Both quite incorrect.

    And both at each others’ throats 24/7 like that half-white and half-black alien in that Old Testament Star Trek episode — “DIE, HERETIC!!!!!”

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  82. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar),

    I did not mean to down play the effect of patriarchy on women. If that was what I conveyed, I am sorry. What I meant to say was that I am a member of a local baptist church first and foremost. That is my conviction. It is self ruled. That is my conviction and what I thought is a major part of being a “baptist “. I do not look at the church’s affiliation with a denomination as major to my commitment to that local church.
    I realize that I cannot understand the bad effect of patriarchy on women the way women can.

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  83. FW Rez: 7. While one would assume that such a petition could not be ignored by the SWBTS trustees the likely hood is that they will disregard it. They are PP loyalists. That’s how they got there in the first place.

    Rule 1: Big Brother Can Do No Wrong.
    Rule 2: See Rule 1.

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  84. drstevej:
    It could be stranger…

    “TELEVANGELIST JIM BAKKER SUGGESTS THAT IF YOU WANT TO SURVIVE THE END OF DAYS, THE BEST THING YOU COULD DO IS BUY ONE OF HIS CABINS IN MISSOURI’S OZARK MOUNTAINS. AND WHILE YOU’RE AT IT, BE SURE TO PICK UP SIX 28-OUNCE “EXTREME SURVIVAL WARFARE” WATER BOTTLES FOR $150.”

    http://www.nowtheendbegins.com/false-teacher-jim-bakker-selling-cabins-in-the-ozark-mountains-as-safest-place-to-survive-the-apocalypse/

    Though the Rapture-Ready-on-Steroids site down that link (which itself ends with an appeal for money) sounds just as extreme, linking Bakker’s scheme to some End Time Prophecy about false teachers. Why do they always have to do some Prophecy Fulfillment tie-in? Isn’t it enough that Bakker is a crook and a con man who’s found a new con?

    And those Tribulation Survival Cabins in the Ozarks are near Branson, MO, i.e. “What Las Vegas would be if it were run by Ned Flanders”.

    I can’t make up stuff like this…

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  85. Lea: But we should talk about what else needs changing, because this one person is only a tiny part of the problem overall. People listened to him, approved him, didn’t challenge him. And they should have.

    That whole thing with systemic abuse is what I’ve been focused on writing about the past few years — the people who are “functionaries” for the ringleaders, and the toxic strategies and structures that infuse into institutions and will require Three Mile Island level detoxing after those guys are gone. The SBC has layers of this going on, with multiple battling ideologies — which amplify the damage done to both individuals and the institutions involved. It’s certainly a sackcloth-and-ashes situation.

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  86. jyjames,

    FW Rez: “SWBTS…. Now it is unrecognizable to me.”

    jyjames: “I wonder if it is unrecognizable to God?”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    someone paint me a picture of jesus with this facial expression and i’ll hang it on my wall. (any artists in the house?)

    https://www.google.com/search?safe=strict&biw=1229&bih=587&tbm=isch&sa=1&ei=79XxWuHYIJeojwP4u7i4CA&q=outraged+facial+expression&oq=outraged+facial+expression&gs_l=img.3…48413.49660.0.50283.8.7.0.0.0.0.253.253.2-1.1.0….0…1c.1.64.img..7.1.253…0i7i30k1j0i7i5i30k1.0.5QdcjaDkhoo#imgrc=E43m88SvabhZaM:

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  87. My first thought as to why the letter does not address abuse was ‘these women want to remain in good standing with the SBC’. They know that although there should be clear guidelines in cases of abuse, many pastors give bad advice in the same vein as PP (or don’t believe victims). Therefore, they chose to adress only the item they felt could not be argued with in order to be heard. As women are given less standing in the SBC, it seems a solid (though misguided) strategy.
    That there is more at play, and at stake, makes sense, though. Glad for your perspectives.

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  88. Ken A,

    I did not assume that you were downplaying anything. Sorry if I implied that. I was basically just pointing out that there are two views (sides) to everything. Sometimes I may be a bit to blunt.

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  89. Pingback: Linkathon! - Phoenix Preacher

  90. truthseeker00: God is a divorcee. Why? Because it is abuse and injustice that God hates, and that is what Jesus was saying. A proper translation would read that ‘God hates ‘putting away”, which the Pharisees were doing unlawfully, casting off faithful spouses without giving them the proper legal papers of divorcement that would preserve their integrity and allow them to officially remarry. By ‘putting away’ a woman improperly, these men were condemning her to slander and a life of loneliness. This is much the same as today’s Church on divorce. Falsely sentencing men and women to ‘marriage without bail’ for life, people have been compelled to live lives of misery and despair.

    Ummm? Really? God condones the ‘casting off (of) faithful spouses’ just as long as the one doing the casting off gets the paperwork straight?

    At the time of my divorce I spent maybe 2-3 years obsessed with the issue of divorce itself, but somehow in looking at everything that Jesus had to say on the related subjects of creation, law, marriage, divorce, remarriage and the option of celibacy I somehow missed His alleged preoccupation with the paperwork as the legal/godly loophole in the whole issue. Apparently Paul did also when he ventured into some particular circumstances regarding this issue.

    Divorce can be literally lifesaving in some circumstances, and in other circumstances it can cause irreparable damage to a human being, and everything in between. Neither end of the divorce opinion extremes is applicable to all people and all circumstances, regardless of the rhetoric to which we have all been exposed.

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  91. I’ll just leave this here. Paige Patterson preached at Bellevue Baptist Church in both services the morning of April 15th. I don’t keep up with the goings-on at Bellevue anymore, but this post made me wonder if in light of the renewed furor over Patterson’s old comments (why now? and what motives? are very good questions!) and his partner-in-crime (the CR, not the other things) Paul Pressler’s scandals recently coming to light, if Patterson had appeared at Bellevue recently. And there he was, less than a month ago.

    For those who may not know, or have forgotten, Bellevue’s Steve Gaines is the current “lame duck” not-a-Calvinist president of the SBC to whom J.D. Greear ceded the election as SBC president in 2016 when after two runoff votes the vote was too close to call. Greear withdrew his name at the last hour, thus giving the win to Gaines. It appears Greear is in the running for 2018.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kVpAbdI56uI

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dCinfSMxTHE

    Or if you want to skip to just the sermons:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BMvUQjX-dwY

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wM8kmwAuZso

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  92. Could it be that the Calvinistas are now using the same tactics PP & PP used 40 years ago to complete their “takeover” of the SBC? The SBC left me a long time ago and I do not ascribe to Calvinist beliefs (at least not all 5 petals of the TULIP), but if this is the case I find it rather ironic.

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  93. Muff Potter,
    My thought exactly when someone told me it was probably not a true story. I thought so not only did he lie but he also just conveyed the message to the women listening to him that they should stay in abusive relationships. How is this better?

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  94. Mercy: I did find an interesting reason that one woman stated in the place where churches were noted, “hands of her ex husband because of views like Dr Pattersons.” That said enough. I want to believe that signers are sincere and want to see this put right, but it may be that there is confusion and/or deception.

    I think most signers are sincere.

    They may not see the whole picture, though.

    Views like Pattersons needs to be harshly criticized and he needs to repent. That later part isn’t going to happen of course.

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  95. jyjames,

    I agree but what denomination doesn’t have this? Tried the Vineyard church– not as old as Baptists but still an “in” group. Tried a CREC—turned and ran when we discovered what a pompous Bible donkey Doug Wilson is. Tried a Calvary Chapel—yeah, probably don’t need to expound on that. We did attend a Bible church while living in Kansas and I can honestly say that was one of the best church experiences we’ve had as a family.

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  96. Mary27: In the case of our daughter, it meant that she would be permitted to separate for a time (not more than 6 weeks) in order for them to have couples marriage counseling (which she had already endured for 9 years) and then she would be required to go back into the abusive marriage. Her ex would of course put on his “repentance act” and from the point of view of the church it would be a success story. “Allowing separation for abuse” is a misrepresentation of the reality of what happens… in the end the abused wife is forced to return.

    Yes. Thank you for sharing that!

    If separate permanently is not an option, than you have not helped a thing. Typically rosy comp nonsense where the husband will magically get better, because they can’t deal with the consequences of reality if he doesn’t. None of them have a good answer when things go wrong. None of them!!

    If separate permanently is an option, then you should just divorce.

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  97. Wade Burleson: Both wings of the SBC – Calvinism and Fundamentalism – battle with the sin of authoritarianism.

    Yes they do and it is not the only sin in play. There are many others including pride that comes with being the biggest–which is a big thing in the US, but is not a Godly value found anywhere in the scripture–and putting more effort into promoting and protecting itself than promoting the real Jesus Christ and protecting the sheep. My pastor is an ordained SBC pastor who left the organization. My biggest beef with leaders in most every denomination is that they allow and even many times encourage their sheep putting them up on pedestals. This practice robs our God of glory and worship which is His alone. All the leaders that do that are despicable from the point of view of the real Jesus. The lack of humble leadership who do not promote themselves and will not play political games for power is a 21st century bane on the Church.

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  98. See Dr. Sarah Lindsay’s excellent response and blog post at Christians for Biblical Equality:

    https://www.cbeinternational.org/blogs/response-paige-pattersons-comments-abuse

    An excerpt:
    “Condemning abuse is a sadly necessary first step, and it’s good that other SBC leaders, like Thom Rainer, have strongly condemned any type of abuse. But the root of the problem lies far deeper than Paige Patterson’s view that some levels of abuse are acceptable. The root of the problem is a view of women that sees them as subordinate to men, as supporting characters to men, rather than as fully realized human beings in their own right.
    And until the church as a whole is willing to acknowledge and repent of this view of women, leaders like Paige Patterson will continue to devalue women and treat them as accessories to men rather than as beloved daughters of God.”

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  99. okrapod: Neither end of the divorce opinion extremes is applicable to all people and all circumstances, regardless of the rhetoric to which we have all been exposed.

    As I see it, these decisions should be reserved for people in the marriage. They are the only ones who know what’s truly going on. Pastors can provide guidance, and it should be better than Pattersons, but that’s really it.

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  100. If you walk away from a denomination, like I finally have from all Baptists as of yesterday, then why not just let them sort it out on their own, and let them rot in the fruit of their own garbage. You can’t change them or help them, really. They don’t care about your opinions, or concerns or questions either. They look at all people as nothing but a head count to go in their church and denomination, and live in ways that make no sense according to the Bible. Let it alone, and maybe it will all just die it’s own death.

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  101. notastepfordsheep: Could it be that the Calvinistas are now using the same tactics PP & PP used 40 years ago to complete their “takeover” of the SBC?

    I suspect a young Al Mohler was watching their methods very closely during the Conservative Resurgence. He essentially mimicked what they did to Calvinize the SBC by planting New Calvinist leaders in key entities … a Calvinism Resurgence is occurring within the denomination.

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  102. Ct,

    A few thoughts. It’s a reasonable idea to just let them fight it out on their own til they implode. Except for the fact that as people leave that system, wounded, they often get to a place where they’re open to processing what happened. And, the more we understand the specific dynamics of the source situation, often the better support people we can be to them.

    Plus if the SBC were an isolated entity it also might do to just let them implode. But they are interwoven with all kinds of other associations and ministries and mission structures, and people whose paradigms have similar tenets. So, what we learn from their situation can travel …

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  103. Mary27:
    They also misrepresent the idea that God only allows divorce for adultery. In reality, if the immoral spouse “repents” then the abused wife is required to forgive and return.

    Not just the adultering or abusive spouse in many New Calvinist churches. The wife is often required to “repent” for not being submissive enough and “making” her husband unfaithful. And often there is much more blame and accusal on the wife and they go very easy on the husband if he pretends to be even a little sorry.

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  104. The signatures on the “Letter to SWBTS Board of Trustees” letter which calls for Patterson’s ouster are somewhat curious. Several are non-Baptist churches such as Assembly of God. The usual Calvinist churches are on there such as Capitol Hill Baptist (Mark Dever’s church), Church of Brook Hills (David Platt’s pre-IMB church), the Village Church (Matt Chandler’s church), The Summitt Church (J. D. Grear’s church), First Baptist Church, Sapulpa, OK (TWW blogged about them May 8, 2017,) and other predominantly Calvinist churches.

    Another curious aspect of these signatures is that several are CBF churches. These churches include Community North Baptist, McKinney, TX, and others. I’m not sure why CBF churches would care about what the SBC is doing, but their signatures may imply remaining resentment over their ouster from SBC leadership by Patterson and others during the Conservative Resurgence.

    To be fair, the signatures on the letters, both for and against, represent individual signatures of church members. One member signing a letter does not necessarily mean that the entire church supports that members’ position.

    As far as I can see, we have two major letters to SWBTS trustees: those for Patterson (https://tinyurl.com/y8o9qmoz) and those against Patterson (http://swbtsletter.com). One dominated by non-Calvinists and one dominated by Calvinists. As this post by the Debs pointed out, in addition to the outrage against abuse, the division of Calvinists and non-Calvinists are probably playing a major part of the call for Patterson’s removal.

    As for me, I will not sign either letter. As a pastor for 21 years, I have seen horrific abuse and in every case I have counseled the abused to leave the home. I have taken many women to shelters that are designed to protect them from their abusers. I have pastored in communities where the abuser murdered the abused. Unfortunately, there aren’t enough shelters for the abused in many cities. In many cities, there aren’t any abuse shelters. If we are serious about helping to protect the abused from abusers, more shelters need to be started. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if SBC churches led the way in starting new abuse shelters? That’s what I call ministry.

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  105. Max: I suspect a young Al Mohler was watching their methods very closely during the Conservative Resurgence.He essentially mimicked what they did to Calvinize the SBC by planting New Calvinist leaders in key entities … a Calvinism Resurgence is occurring within the denomination.

    Yes, I’m sure he did. For some reason my previous comment (right above the one that came through) is “awaiting moderation.” I’ll just repeat the Cliff Notes version here, and that is that Patterson preached 2 services at Bellevue Baptist Church last month. Bellevue’s pastor is Steve Gaines, the “lame duck” not-a-Calvinist president of the SBC who will be replaced by a new president next month. J.D. Greear, Gaines’ main opponent in 2016 who by withdrawing his name from nomination at the last hour after two runoff votes failed to produce a winner, is reportedly in the running this year. He’s among the neo-Cals in the SBC, no?

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  106. Ct:
    If you walk away from a denomination, like I finally have from all Baptists as of yesterday, then why not just let them sort it out on their own, and let them rot in the fruit of their own garbage.You can’t change them or help them, really.

    There’s many reasons. You can warn unaware people about not getting involved with them, because this groups is often very deceptive. Not only do they pretend to be something different to visitors, they will do force takeovers of churches and take all their resources. This group is also looking to infiltrate other denominations, both directly and via The Gospel Coalition website and their book sales. The Assemblies of God church here where I live is New Calvinist. And last, there are good-hearted people who go to these churches, who don’t know that they can leave because the church has made their covenant out to be a legal contract. These churches lie to them and threaten them and even bribe husbands to stay with promises of leadership if they force their families to remain.

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  107. notastepfordsheep:
    Could it be that the Calvinistas are now using the same tactics PP & PP used 40 years ago to complete their “takeover” of the SBC?The SBC left me a long time ago and I do not ascribe to Calvinist beliefs (at least not all 5 petals of the TULIP), but if this is the case I find it rather ironic.

    They were directly a part of it, but I think Patterson and Pressler believed blindly that they weren’t that ambitious. Many of the New Calvinist leaders were already in place in the takeover, but had not fully revealed their Calvinist beliefs or affiliation with Mohler.

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  108. ishy,
    I would also say that knowing about these things, even in hindsight, can explain things for people like me who left already, about why it didn’t feel right.

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  109. I had the same sense – gut feeling about the survey. It feels and looks off for all the reasons mentioned in the post and comments. It grieves me that abuse victims and ultimately women in general, are likely being used as pawns.

    Again, these problems are not just isolated in *Paige Patterson* alone, though he does need to be held accountable as an individual.

    All the evidence and witness to this systemic issue has been there for decades, easily accessible and testified to by many. It’s why I agree and feel like this really *isn’t* about the value and safety of women, at all. At least not really. It smells and looks opportunistic.

    Though I’m sure by default some women will be helped and better awareness will result in the future. So at least some good might come of it.

    And, outside all the male views that have been enacted and present in multiple camps (not just Patterson): You also have the damaging views of women and abuse as consistently taught in women-led ministries like Revive Our Hearts, etc. It’s not just men who are doing damage, giving horrible/dangerous advice or at best, unclear and confusing, counsel.

    So, what’s this really all about SBC? This kind of stuff is why I left, rather: ran away and had multiple flight responses to stuff I was experiencing and seeing.

    Nothing is as ever as it appears – you can’t trust that what you see and what you are being told by them is *real*.

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  110. Wonder who told Mac Brunson it was time to move on? To a much smaller church! This doesn’t happen every day. And Heath Lambert replaces Brunson. Lots of things changing in Middle-Earth. My guess is that Mohler is calling all the shots now. And why not? Hasn’t he been called the smartest human on the planet? So glad I’m GONE from the SBC after being in it for more than half a century.

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  111. Lea:
    I would also say that knowing about these things, even in hindsight, can explain things for people like me who left already, about why it didn’t feel right.

    I think it’s been very therapeutic for me. I had a front-row seat to some of this stuff and I thought they had lost their minds, but everyone seemed to just go along with it. It’s nice to know I wasn’t the only one who thought they were absolutely not Biblical or following Christ despite all their claims to the contrary.

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  112. Just two different stories from my family on how the church can handle abuse and help the woman:

    My aunt was being badly abused. Her pastor counselled her on how to safely leave and offered her family refuge behind his shotgun with him and his family. She took it. She did not divorce her husband, he divorced her when her pastor counselled her never to return home to the abuse. She remained single, and moved into her own place. Her church supported her financially from the 1930’s until her death (70’s or 80’s).

    When our daughter was being verbally abused, the pastor that married them tried to counsel them. Finally he told daughter he could not help son in law, and to do what she needed to be safe. We supported her divorce and remarriage. All that loss (home, job, wife, child, pets, friends) was part of what brought that man to salvation.

    Neither pastor supported divorce and remarriage. Two very different outcomes.

    But what I have never understood is why, if you are being abused and believe it is no sin to divorce or divorce and remarry, would you stay in a church that taught otherwise and try to change IT. Why not just worship elsewhere?

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  113. emily honey,

    I should clarify that the women signing – I don’t know why they are, I’m sure a lot are sincere. Some may not be.

    The whole Patterson drama in general is what I was referring to when I said it looks and smells like opportunism, not really a pure concern for women and abuse victims.

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  114. Ct,

    “why not just let them sort it out on their own, and let them rot in the fruit of their own garbage. You can’t change them or help them, really. They don’t care about your opinions, or concerns or questions either.”
    +++++++++++++++++++

    my thinking is the target audience is largely joe and joanne christian and scores of naive pastors everywhere who are caught in they sway of these powerbrokers, only seeing the shiny gospel image they cultivate.

    and falling prey to the scare tactics of ‘compromising the gospel’, ‘falling short of the glory of God’, if you don’t do what they say.

    my last church was light years away from SBC, geographically and philosophically. yet even there the influence was felt very strongly. the pastors didn’t seem to realize how it contradicted the historical positions of the denomination.

    seems just about comment of mine includes the words “I’m amazed”, “astonished”…. but it’s simply true.

    i’m ‘aghast’ (for a change) at how so many pastors can look you in the eye and say 2 things which contradict each other with utter conviction — aside from being totally illogical, things which harm people.

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  115. elastigirl: i’m ‘aghast’ (for a change) at how so many pastors can look you in the eye and say 2 things which contradict each other with utter conviction — aside from being totally illogical, things which harm people.

    doublethink, comrade, doublethink.

    “To know and not to know, to be conscious of complete truthfulness while telling carefully constructed lies, to hold simultaneously two opinions which cancelled out, knowing them to be contradictory and believing in both of them, to use logic against logic, to repudiate morality while laying claim to it, to believe that democracy was impossible and that the Party was the guardian of democracy, to forget whatever it was necessary to forget, then to draw it back into memory again at the moment when it was needed, and then promptly to forget it again, and above all, to apply the same process to the process itself—that was the ultimate subtlety: consciously to induce unconsciousness, and then, once again, to become unconscious of the act of hypnosis you had just performed. Even to understand the word—doublethink—involved the use of doublethink.

    “The power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them… To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just as long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies—all this is indispensably necessary. Even in using the word doublethink it is necessary to exercise doublethink. For by using the word one admits that one is tampering with reality; by a fresh act of doublethink one erases this knowledge; and so on indefinitely, with the lie always one leap ahead of the truth.”
    — G.Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four

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  116. Oh yeah. Choreographed right down to Patterson’s replacement this summer. The funny thing is that you probably couldn’t find ten people at FBC Jax who could tell you what century John Calvin lived. With the SBC it’s never theological. It’s always about control. Especially control of the purse strings. Brunson moving down the ladder speaks volumes.

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  117. dee:
    emily honey,

    I agree. And I am getting closer to the source of this letter every hour. Could it be that this wasn’t a letter drafted purely by women? Something smells.

    As in ghost-written by (Male) Anointed who then ordered their submissive widdle wimmen to sign it?

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  118. ishy: I had a front-row seat to some of this stuff and I thought they had lost their minds, but everyone seemed to just go along with it.

    That would have been so surreal!

    It still blows my mind that i was attending Devers church regularly/sometime intermittently for 3-4 years. But I was preoccupied with (non religious) school and not paying attention to backroom stuff.

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  119. ishy: Not just the adultering or abusive spouse in many New Calvinist churches. The wife is often required to “repent” for not being submissive enough and “making” her husband unfaithful. And often there is much more blame and accusal on the wife and they go very easy on the husband if he pretends to be even a little sorry.

    Win-Win Situation if you were born with the right equipment between the legs.
    FEATURE, NOT BUG.

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  120. Max: I suspect a young Al Mohler was watching their methods very closely during the Conservative Resurgence. He essentially mimicked what they did to Calvinize the SBC by planting New Calvinist leaders in key entities …

    Just like the Kims of North Korea watched the methods of their mentor Stalin very closely.

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  121. dee: And I am getting closer to the source of this letter every hour.

    If anyone can, you can. It was hard to tell in the HuffPost piece if the had access to the primaries or not.

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  122. dee:
    emily honey,

    I agree. And I am getting closer to the source of this letter every hour. Could it be that this wasn’t a letter drafted purely by women? Something smells.

    I can’t imagine drafting a letter to call out a man for bad behavior towards women and adding a bunch of comp nonsense in there!

    I’m not sure what to make of that. Of course, I’m not steeped in this world. Maybe they thought they needed to say that to be heard but that is the actual problem!!! You have to agree on everything to even be heard. If you were looking to promote groupthink and bad decision making you couldn’t do a better job than to set up a system like that.

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  123. Lea: Nancy2 (aka Kevlar),
    No questioning whether the ‘conservative resurgence’ was a good thing to began with.

    Remember Islam’s “conservative resurgence” when Wahabi Theology mated up with Saudi oil money…

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  124. You’re mistaken if you think that Patterson has just now fumbled the ball and is an embarrassment to the SBC. He hasn’t changed; ever. He’s had his day as king and kingmaker. It’s just a regime change. Politics. 100%. And if you think he and his generation of kings have been bad just wait and see what the new regime is like.

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  125. Steve: Wonder who told Mac Brunson it was time to move on? To a much smaller church!

    Is this common knowledge or do you attend/have friends who attend FBC Jax? I have not heard or seen that he was going to a smaller (comparatively) church.

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  126. Lea: That would have been so surreal!

    It still blows my mind that i was attending Devers church regularly/sometime intermittently for 3-4 years. But I was preoccupied with (non religious) school and not paying attention to backroom stuff.

    Maybe not surreal. I mean, there’s always been ignorant people in the church who either wanted to get ahead or believed stupid things.

    I knew the Conservative Resurgence was coordinated, but where I lived, there just weren’t many options outside of the SBC. And it wasn’t until after Akin took over SEBTS that anyone treated me poorly because I was a female. Patterson told me himself that he supported female missionaries. I wasn’t disappointed to not be a pastor; I was more disappointed that more men didn’t want to be missionaries.

    It wasn’t until I found TWW that I realized how deep the rabbit hole with Mohler and Akin went.

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  127. Steve,

    “Wonder who told Mac Brunson it was time to move on? To a much smaller church! This doesn’t happen every day. And Heath Lambert replaces Brunson. Lots of things changing in Middle-Earth. My guess is that Mohler is calling all the shots now.”
    ++++++++++++++++

    from what you know of things< how do you think it might have played out? how might it have been orchestrated & amongst whom?

    (it’s not an uninteresting story here)

    i assume i’m not the only one who thinks it feels like the maffia?

    all this sure could be made into a film in the intrigue genre. (or horror)

    now who would play the parts? Gary Oldman and Daniel Day Lewis can do anything. Wonder if Bob Balaban can do calculating NPD.

    it all kind of reminds me of “The Firm” — wholesome family image, terrifyingly evil and corrupt beneath. Hal Holbrook did well in that one, i thought.

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  128. I need to confess…when I first heard Paige Patterson’s name years ago I thought he was she. I had never heard the name Paige for a man.

    Now, I hope he fades quietly into the background!

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  129. Bene D: Signing a website letter without sufficient information such as who/what doesn’t seem wise.

    Yeah. It could be someone harvesting names for some unknown purpose, at the very minimum. The fact that the signers are supposed to agree to the comp arguments of the BFM 2000 may give us an indication as to who is behind it.

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  130. Amy Smith: Where is the outrage about John Piper who gave the same advice as Patterson? Piper said a woman should endure abuse for a season and getting smacked around for a night. That advice could be deadly.

    Amy, you made me go to Desiring God. Anyway,not defending John Piper, but he was kinda sorta forced to back down from that position in the video back in 2012:

    https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/clarifying-words-on-wife-abuse

    He admits there’s a role for the civil authorities but really the church should be involved at every step. It’s still lousy, horrible advice by a guy with no rlecperience in the area. People would do better to call (in the US) the National Domestic Violence Hotline. Those people are trained and have resources.

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  131. ishy: The Assemblies of God church here where I live is New Calvinist.

    Really? I always thought of the AoG as being the epitome of Arminianism. How do they reconcile TULIP with the Sunday altar call? *boggles*

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  132. Steve: The funny thing is that you probably couldn’t find ten people at FBC Jax who could tell you what century John Calvin lived.

    If they are like most Southern Baptists, they don’t really give a big whoop about things like theology. But if you suggest canceling their potluck dinners, you will have a war on your hands!

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  133. ishy: The Assemblies of God church here where I live is New Calvinist.

    Yes, as strange as it may seem, New Calvinism is increasing in AoG churches. Certain of their churches helped put unrepentant Driscoll back on his feet by bringing him as a special speaker during his exile.

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  134. Steve: Heath Lambert replaces Brunson … My guess is that Mohler is calling all the shots now

    He has for the last 20 years … a brilliant strategist … the most powerful man in the SBC … untouchable.

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  135. Burwell: Is this common knowledge or do you attend/have friends who attend FBC Jax? I have not heard or seen that he was going to a smaller (comparatively) church.

    Someone sent me this (from Twitter?) the other day.

    May 20th schedule at @ValleydaleSBC:

    Sunday, May 20 @ 10 AM
    Breakfast in the Lobby
    Sunday, May 20 @ 10:45 AM
    One Service with Mac Brunson preaching, followed by vote

    Now when you go to that church’s website the part about Brunson has been omitted, but the person sent me a screen shot and the unedited version was still visible in Google’s cache. It may not be now. I don’t know if they didn’t want the cat out of the bag yet or if they’ve “uncalled” Brunson. I suppose May 20th everyone will know.

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  136. Ct,

    Reasons for posting:
    Deb is still a member of an SBC church.
    We can all learn from the mess. They are still part of the church universal.
    By being informed we can they to stop this from happening at other churches.
    I gave years of tithes to the SBC. I want to see how they are using my money.
    I find this whole thing fascinating.

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  137. ishy: And it wasn’t until after Akin took over SEBTS that anyone treated me poorly because I was a female.

    Really?

    I think this comp stuff is way more destructive than anything else, which is maybe my biases

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  138. ishy: They were directly a part of it, but I think Patterson and Pressler believed blindly that they weren’t that ambitious. Many of the New Calvinist leaders were already in place in the takeover, but had not fully revealed their Calvinist beliefs or affiliation with Mohler.

    I was referring to the 1970s when PP & PP had their little “Cafe du Monde” meeting and started the CR ball rolling. Mohler was only a teenager then. But I’m sure you’re correct there were Calvinists in the flock back then. In fact, am I dreaming or didn’t the SBC used to have more of a Calvinist flavor? I’m talking about 60-70 years ago. I remember my “very Southern Baptist” grandparents using the RSV which, if I’m not mistaken, is “calvinistic” in origin. Correct me if I’m wrong.

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  139. It wasn’t the Calvinists they were so much concerned with as it was the perceived “liberal professors in our seminaries corrupting our preacher boys.” And back then a lot of us believed them. We didn’t have the internet. I wonder if things would have gone the same direction if we had.

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  140. notastepfordsheep,

    Thank you NSS. The church is in Birmingham, AL, which is where David Platt was for a while, and where Briarwood Presbyterian is located as well. If it’s small, it’s probably not poor, based on the website and the number of staff.

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  141. dee: How’s the cash flow of the smaller church?

    Well, in the small church where I serve (60 active members at best), there is more hustle than flow. But I’m sure Brunson would consider anything under 2000 small.

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  142. dee: Reasons for posting:

    These posts are very therapeutic to those who have been disenfranchised by CR in the SBC. We saw a political takeover of our denomination. Institutions that were supposed to be safe, i.e SWBTS, became pawns in the power play of Patterson and Pressler.

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  143. Burwell:
    notastepfordsheep,

    Thank you NSS. The church is in Birmingham, AL, which is where David Platt was for a while, and where Briarwood Presbyterian is located as well. If it’s small, it’s probably not poor, based on the website and the number of staff.

    You’re welcome. I noticed it’s “elder-ruled” now. If I were Mac I’d stay far, far away! Shoot, if I were anyone I’d stay far away from that recipe for disaster!

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  144. FW Rez: These posts are very therapeutic to those who have been disenfranchised by CR in the SBC. We saw a political takeover of our denomination. Institutions that were supposed to be safe, i.e SWBTS, became pawns in the power play of Patterson and Pressler.

    Yes, and Patterson and Pressler’s chickens are coming home to roost at long last. Karma is no respecter of persons OR preachers.

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  145. notastepfordsheep: Patterson and Pressler’s chickens are coming home to roost

    One thing the SWBTS trustees need to consider in desciplining Patterson is any implication of accountability for past misdeeds. May not bode well in the pending Pressler case.

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  146. I just now read that petition. They lost me with the first sentence: “We are concerned Southern Baptist women who affirm the Baptist Faith and Message 2000, including its statements on the roles of men and women in the family and in the church.”

    I still hold to basic Baptist beliefs, but one of my disqualifications for joining another Baptist church is if they “affirm the BF&M 2000.” The 1963 version was just fine, TYVM.

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  147. FW Rez: One thing the SWBTS trustees need to consider in desciplining Patterson is any implication of accountability for past misdeeds. May not bode well in the pending Pressler case.

    I know, right? Those two names are going to forever be tightly linked regardless of whether Patterson (or for that matter, Pressler) is ever “disciplined” or not.

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  148. FW Rez: Institutions that were supposed to be safe, i.e SWBTS, became pawns in the power play of Patterson and Pressler.

    Russel Dilday, former SWBTS President, was terminated in an un-Christian manner IMO.

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  149. Deb:
    Deb,

    And I’m so glad that the authors of the petition (who hide in anonymity) provided a place for church names. It’s so much more useful than just a list of names.

    My husband , a pastor for 25 years, never even read letters he received that weren’t signed. If they wouldn’t put their name to it, it went in the trash.

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  150. Headless Unicorn Guy: i.e. Jesus was returning them to the original source documents, ha-Torah.
    Giving a Reality Check to all the accreted Rabbinical rulings.

    Not that these rulings were originally bad things; as guardians and interpreters of ha-Torah, the Rabbis had to make specific interpretations as new situations arose. (Think of Supreme Court decisions in this country — someone had to make a ruling.)

    The danger in that is that such interpretations (and interpretations of those interpretations) can accumulate and bend things beyond recognition or original/actual intent. The danger is when the accumulated edifice of Law becomes a pen-twirling abstract game and the Man the Sabbath was made for gets thrown under its bus.

    Thank you HUG for this comment. It is really helpful to me.

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  151. FW Rez: One thing the SWBTS trustees need to consider in desciplining Patterson is any implication of accountability for past misdeeds. May not bode well in the pending Pressler case.

    The end game may be to avoid legal matters altogether.

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  152. ishy: I think it’s been very therapeutic for me. I had a front-row seat to some of this stuff and I thought they had lost their minds, but everyone seemed to just go along with it. It’s nice to know I wasn’t the only one who thought they were absolutely not Biblical or following Christ despite all their claims to the contrary.

    I agree that it has been a relief to learn that others have had some of the same concerns. I had just a little peek behind the curtain and could never feel ok in an SBC church afterwards. But with so many of my friends, neighbors, and extended family (including some clergy) so dedicated to this denomination, I’ve had plenty of days of wondering whether I’m the problem.

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  153. I read through all the names that signed the letter last night to see if anyone from my church signed it. I found it interesting that the church most heavily represented from the Dallas area was The Village Church. Wow, did they all sign a letter saying that Matt Chandler should step down when he showed such incredibly poor judgement with the child porn guy. Paige Patterson’s joke about the 16 year old was in very poor taste and totally inappropriate as were his comments about abused women, but Matt Chandler et al, encouraged church members to embrace a pedophile and didn’t tell them about his child porn addiction. That is just as bad if not worse! Step down Matt!

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  154. Muslin, fka Deana Holmes: Really? I always thought of the AoG as being the epitome of Arminianism. How do they reconcile TULIP with the Sunday altar call? *boggles*

    I can’t figure it out either. They seem like completely incompatible theologies to me. But I’ve known the pastor of that church for 20 years, and he’s sold out to TGC and Piper. I think it’s all the propaganda they put out.

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  155. It was well-known at SWBTS that any Calvinist professors would not receive tenure as long as Patterson was president. A handful of professors left SWBTS due to this issue. All of the professors who left were great teachers who were compassionate and cared about their students and for the most part stayed out of SBC politics.

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  156. On Valleydale’s website under the page called “In view of a call schedule” they have a link to a community profile with lots of statistics about the church and area. Very interesting. They say they run about 1800 in weekly attendance, but looking closer it seems this is every soul that sets foot on the main campus, plus the downtown spin-off, at any time during the week. Actual Sunday service attendance at the suburban campus appears to be a fairly modest <800.
    I’m familiar with the area, having gone to school there 30ish years ago and having a daughter living there now. It used to be considered way out in the sticks, but most of the growth has headed that direction for years and the eastern and northeastern suburbs are booming and flush.

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  157. emily honey: The whole Patterson drama in general is what I was referring to when I said it looks and smells like opportunism, not really a pure concern for women and abuse victims.

    “Humans are very seldom either totally sincere or totally hypocritical. Their moods change, their motives are mixed, and they are often themselves quite mistaken as to what their motives are.” (C.S. Lewis)

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  158. notastepfordsheep: Karma is no respecter of persons OR preachers.

    Her sister Comeuppance is relentless too.
    She and her sister Karma have a sole function in the Cosmos, ensuring that Themis’s balance is balanced.

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  159. ishy,

    “I can’t figure it out either. They seem like completely incompatible theologies to me. But I’ve known the pastor of that church for 20 years, and he’s sold out to TGC and Piper. I think it’s all the propaganda they put out.”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++

    my former AOG pastor said 2 things one right after the other that stick in my mind:

    “John Piper, and all-round really good guy….”

    “…says that there comes a point where you just have to take the bible on faith.”

    and with that, my former AOG pastor has opened himself to easily embracing anything else that John Piper rattles off. as well as the TGC crowd.

    he preaches square circles with smiling conviction, even if they are stupid, unreasonable, ludicrous, unjust, dangerous, and harm people.

    John Piper said it was biblical. That’s enough.

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  160. Anonymous Oracle at Delphi: The young, Reformed crowd see themselves as representatives of a true Christianity, and they see Christians of other stripes as rubes and nabobs.

    Al Mohler, and other Founders-type Calvinists in the SBC, are using the energy of the young and easily-indoctrinated to accomplish what they couldn’t … Calvinization of the largest non-Calvinist denomination in America. They will soon reap the bounty of great resources (seminaries, mission agencies, publishing house, and 45,000+ churches) … paid for over the years by millions of non-Calvinist Southern Baptists. To date, it has been easy pickins’.
    It was a brilliant strategy to recruit the YRR into SBC, fire them up with books and conferences, indoctrinate them, and then release them to takeover SBC churches by stealth and deception. IMO, it’s a form of abuse – to take advantage of young minds and then mobilize them to do your dirty work. There is very little that could be referred to as Christlike in the methodology being used by leaders of the new reformation.

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  161. Max: If they are like most Southern Baptists, they don’t really give a big whoop about things like theology. But if you suggest canceling their potluck dinners, you will have a war on your hands!

    We’ve spoken of this before Max. The Neo-Cals are like the Carpetbaggers of old during Reconstruction in the South, with one crucial difference; the Neo-Cal takeover is not backed up with Federal troops.
    As an outsider, I see the problem as one of voluntary-head-in-the-sand-it’ll-be-okay complacency.
    In Southern Baptist life it’s a shame there aren’t more men like you Max, men who’ll stand up to these Scallywags.

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  162. Muff Potter: I see the problem as one of voluntary-head-in-the-sand-it’ll-be-okay complacency

    During my long journey, I have observed three types of church folks: (1) those who plan to make things happen, (2) those who make things happen, and (3) those who wonder “What happened?!” Most long-time Southern Baptists fall into the latter category when it comes to the New Calvinist takeover of their denomination.

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  163. Max: “Humans are very seldom either totally sincere or totally hypocritical. Their moods change, their motives are mixed, and they are often themselves quite mistaken as to what their motives are.” (C.S. Lewis)

    Good, now I can educate myself and answer my own questions on the question I asked up-thread about about mixed motives and how the concept is woven into Christian thought. Lewis would be a good place to start.

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  164. Max: I have observed three types of church folks

    “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field; and this is smaller than all other seeds, but when it is full grown, it is larger than the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that THE BIRDS OF THE AIR come and NEST IN ITS BRANCHES.” – Matt. 13:31-32

    An overgrown tree full of birds (of the air, airwaves) creates a loud boisterous racket that only draws attention to itself. Later, these same loud birds eat the Good Seed put out by the Good Sower. Beware of bad birds nesting:

    “Birds of every kind will nest in it; they will find shelter in the shade of its branches. All the trees of the forest will know that I the Lord bring down the tall tree and make the low tree grow tall.” Ezekiel 17:23-4

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  165. drstevej: If Mohler could select the next SWBTS President, who would it be?

    Good question. I suspect a Mohler insider at SBTS might be tapped. Danny Akin, SEBTS President, was Mohler’s Dean of Theology … Jason Allen, MWBTS President, was Mohler’s Executive Assistant & VP of Institutional Development. Mohler has lots of folks to pick from. Perhaps the current Dean of Theology at Southern, Gregory Wills? Appointing his bud Mark Dever would be a stretch and I think we can all rest – it won’t be C.J. Mahaney!

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  166. Max,

    My guess is that the SWBTS current trustees and this year’s nominees have been prescreened to agree to whoever Patterson has hand picked to be his successor before he ever allowed them on his board.

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  167. Augustine:
    Bene D,

    The list also seems to me a target… Or in the words of Mark Dever “an easy target for church discipline.” Here’s Patterson and Dever scheming together about “easy targets.”They’re practically giddish about it… https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=22IfJ3OzRbY Dangerousand Scheming characters – both of them.When the dust settles the 9marks crickets will come out with a 1, 2, 3 get ‘em plan for church pastors for every unsuspecting soul all while they gleefully go ringing their hands together and saying, “Aaaaah, the plan worked perfectl

    From the YouTube clip:
    Patterson: “More and more are realizing that you can’t have a meaningless church membership and expect to have an impact on the world”

    Later, Dever: ” we don’t need to spend this time talking about the abuses of church discipline. Boy, we understand they’re there, but they’re nowhere near that’s the main problem in most of our main churches (sic). It’s not personal vindictiveness, it’s so many things it’s not…”

    The discussion then gets to easy targets, which is recommended by Patterson over someone caught in some “heinous iniquity because you’re going to have sympathy problems there.”
    (Paul seems to have a different recommendation to a church in 1 Corinthians 5, without any mention of sympathy problems).

    Rather, its recommended to target those who hasn’t been in church attendance in five years — because we know that church rolls are updated vigorously, right?
    Of them, Patterson says, “they’re not intending to come, and we owe them – – if we love them – – a confrontation.”

    Well, then, that’s what we’re,offering him — a confrontation and invitation to repentance where called for.

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  168. Sòpwith,

    i sure appreciate your comments Sopy and I’m sad to hear about the temp holding pattern on your posts, i have been in moderation for months now and it makes it not possible to have conversations cause everyone else is on the next topic before mine show up. if you been in it for 4 yrs i think i will just give up,i thought it was temporary. they put me in moderation cause i posted 14 comments on a article and another reader complained.

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  169. okrapod,

    okrapod: Ummm? Really? God condones the ‘casting off (of) faithful spouses’ just as long as the one doing the casting off gets the paperwork straight?

    It is not a matter of paperwork, or following the rules. It is a matter of abuse.

    Jesus was not promoting divorce. Neither do I. Yet in a world of hard hearts, it is inevitable. After Jesus stated that God’s design was for marriage to be a lifelong covenant, the Pharisees demanded to know why the Law – written by God – allowed for divorce. What was implied in the answer of ‘hard hearts’: selfishness, pettiness, addictions, extreme narcissism, abuse, and so on. God is too good and gracious to confine people without hope of escape to what sometimes turns out to be impossible situations.

    Where Jesus drew the line was at he casual, improperly applied practice of ‘putting away’ without going through the same sort of official steps as originated the covenant. Putting away a woman without papers left her essentially branded with the letter ‘A’, whether she deserved it or not, and made her unable to lawfully remarry. The men knew this, but did not want to pay back the dowry and bride price that were part of properly ending a marriage. So they just walked away, leaving the wife, and their children, essentially penniless and unable to provide for themselves. In those days, a woman could not go out and get a job at Walmart.

    So, no, I am not saying that God is a tyrant for methodology; rather, he is a fortress for the abused and oppressed which the cruel perversion of ‘putting away’ happened to produce.

    God is all goodness, all lovingkindness, all grace and mercy. He is patient with our sin, and makes exceptions for our inability to perform as we ought. Sadly, the ability to nullify a contract is essential to justice in a world of imperfect people.

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  170. Steve,

    yeah, well…it was pathetic and I’ve left the organized church because of it. Just the last straw, the way that went down sunday and the “explanations” which was just a bunch of doublespeak designed for anyone who was fool enough to buy it. I had too many years behind me of this rot to watch that. These people don’t care…God does, but the ministry doesn’t and that’s why I say let them fester in it. There’s got to be a better kind of church that is more in line with the Jesus in the Bible. And I’m not a calvinist either. You just wouldn’t believe the way they tried to explain it all away.

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  171. dee,

    Well, I find this whole thing nauseating…LOL…everyone should follow their own spiritual path…and mine is out the door. Not away from Jesus, but out the door of the church.

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  172. I hope someday we can all find one another at the new non-hierarchical, non-institutional unchurch. I have a feeling I may end up a Unitarian. Sure, you can worship your puppy if you want, but at least there is no one forcing their official orthodoxy down your throat or threatening to discipline you for not wearing the right clothes, doing the right things or believing the right things.

    As long as we love God and others, and do not harm anyone, does it really matter if we have the ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ interpretation of ‘atonement’, ‘justification’ and ‘perfect’? Just done with arrogant, legalistic fundamentalists who despise everyone who does not believe, think and look just like them.

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  173. Augustine,

    I was trying to present a fact without speculating.

    My first speculation was harvesting – take a hot news story, a cause, a group, twig their emotions, throw up a petition…and the sheep will flock.

    Why not register the website in your name? Fear? Of?
    Secondary agendas?
    Strikes me as manipulative.

    I confess I am a cynic. If whoever wrote this can’t be transparent and forthcoming for whatever reason, is it wise to jump on this bandwagon?

    Speculation aside, the fact is, whoever wrote this is cloaked at this stage.

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  174. Ken A,

    IN the 1963 version, there is no Article XVIII, nothing saying that the husband is the servant-leader and that the wife must graciously submit.

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  175. I used to think that to be egalitatian you were a liberal, card caring, flag waving, man-despising feminist.

    Then I recently listened to this scholarly debate … I have completely reconsidered my views in light of the origins of complementarianism. Talk about gullible. This is where a Southern Baptist petition should be put forth! And it should be done by the men. God help us.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v0_mYvbgcKE

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  176. Ken A,

    Actually, if you Google “baptist faith and message comparison”, it puts the 1925, 1963, and 2000 versions in parallel form. It’s very helpful in seeing the subtle changes.

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  177. So I am adding to my above comment, I’m going to see’s calling this new doctrine complementarianism and call it instead what it actually is by its own teachings – it is a social order of, “gender subordination.”

    Now that I have combed through the text and the original language of those pet texts that have brought about this gender subordination… The church had been duped!

    And the men that devised this new idea including grounding it in the Trinity, are PhD‘s. They could’ve figured this out rightly – biblically – if they wanted to.

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  178. Max: Good question.I suspect a Mohler insider at SBTS might be tapped.Danny Akin, SEBTS President, was Mohler’s Dean of Theology … Jason Allen, MWBTS President, was Mohler’s Executive Assistant & VP of Institutional Development.Mohler has lots of folks to pick from.Perhaps the current Dean of Theology at Southern, Gregory Wills?Appointing his bud Mark Dever would be a stretch and I think we can all rest – it won’t be C.J. Mahaney!

    There’s a fairly clear indicator to his strategy. Mohler himself was chosen because he was a finance guy. Akin had similar talents. I doubt Mohler will choose from theologians and go for those who’ve proven themselves at either fundraising or student recruitment. Akin and Allen are likely choices.

    Mohler is thought of as these great theologian by many of the YRR, but he really has not done any great scholarship.

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  179. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar),

    Now I am up to date! This article is very helpful. The SBC at the Convention level is hopeless.
    The comparison of the BFM 1925, 1968 and 2000 is confusing. At least to me. Until you pointed out that Article XVIII was not in the original 1963 and added in 1998.
    I have been in blissful ignorance. PP & PP are worse than I had originally imagined.
    Again, you have been very helpful to correct my ignorance.

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  180. I just want to say thank you to the Deebs for creating this forum where collective thoughts and research can be brought together to sort through the quagmire (could have used a different word here) and examine historical events and find biblical truth. This power structures are abominable.

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  181. Augustine,

    Glad to hear that you’ve reconsidered. The truth is that the whole point of Egal theology is obedience to God. You can’t obey God if someone else is making your choices for you. That’s why we had to let go of Comp theology in order to obey God’s command, “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.”

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  182. Augustine: I used to think that to be egalitatian you were a liberal, card caring, flag waving, man-despising feminist.

    I think this has been propaganda basically. Used as a tool to keep women and men in line with all the ‘real’ christians. Its’ rubbish.

    There are a ton of men at my egal church and they are not despised, and neither am I. That’s the way it should be.

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  183. dee: We can all learn from the mess. They are still part of the church universal.

    SBC is not the only denomination with issues but it is one of the biggest. It has a lot of power, influence and money.

    There are a fair number of the political elite who identify or have identified with this denomination.

    Non-Christians need to know the trends. Our democracy may not be perfect but I definitely want to understand what my elected officials are supporting.

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  184. Augustine: I used to think that to be egalitatian you were a liberal, card caring, flag waving, man-despising feminist.

    That’s because that is what you were taught by men like Patterson, Mohler and the Neo-Cals. That is the one agenda these men shared – besides power, praise and money. But now the more militant wing is taking charge. Scary.

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  185. ishy: Akin and Allen are likely choices.

    Yes. Moving Danny Akin to SWBTS would make sense. Jason Allen may be a little too green to move into hostile territory. That would still leave a seminary head position open. Whatever happens will have been predestined by Mohler.

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  186. Ken A:
    Nancy2 (aka Kevlar),

    So basically it is the 1963 with the Amendment of 1998 that is the same as 2000?
    The BFM didn’t have an Article XVIII?
    I think I see now. Thanks

    Right. And they were not at all forthcoming about what they were doing with the born-and-bred baptists, either!

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  187. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar),

    The article F W Rez linked to is a good one, too. But you were asking about the authority part, so I linked the one that I did.

    Summary:
    *male authority
    *bye-bye, Jesus
    *bye-bye soul competency
    *opened the door for TULIP and creedalism, group-think

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  188. FW Rez: My guess is that the SWBTS current trustees and this year’s nominees have been prescreened to agree to whoever Patterson has hand picked to be his successor before he ever allowed them on his board.

    Perhaps, but the SBC landscape is quickly changing. Enrollment continues to drop at SWBTS as seminary candidates desire to ride the New Calvinist wave. I suspect some of the trustees will compromise or bail out and when that happens the vote may swing in favor of Mohler’s camp … PP loyalties may shift in the heat of the battle.

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  189. ishy: Mohler is thought of as these great theologian by many of the YRR, but he really has not done any great scholarship.

    He’s a Great Theologian because HE SAYS HE IS A GREAT THEOLOGIAN!
    It’s called “Building Your Brand”.
    (Just like all those Social Media Celebrities building their brand 24/7 from their mommy’s basements.)

    Celebrity: Someone who is famous entirely for Being Famous.

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  190. ishy: There’s a fairly clear indicator to his strategy. Mohler himself was chosen because he was a finance guy. Akin had similar talents. I doubt Mohler will choose from theologians and go for those who’ve proven themselves at either fundraising or student recruitment.

    “The Cash Must Flow.”

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  191. Augustine: So I am adding to my above comment, I’m going to see’s calling this new doctrine complementarianism and call it instead what it actually is by its own teachings – it is a social order of, “gender subordination.”

    No, MALE SUPREMACY.
    Examples: Iran, Talibanistan, and The Handmaid’s Tale.

    Drawing parallels between them and The Handmaid’s Tale gets the point across with the addition of a more-or-less familiar example to do the heavy lifting. And the term “male supremacist” echoes “white supremacist”, leveraging even more pre-existing baggage.

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  192. Wow. Still reading through the three BFM’s, but if read carefully, one sees that Calvinism was already worked in with the subtle redefining of salvation. It’s all about ‘Regeneration’, which is tellingly placed before faith. Haven’t even gotten to the comp stuff. I’m not a Baptist, but y’all’s goose was cooked a long time ago.

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  193. Muff Potter: We’ve spoken of this before Max. The Neo-Cals are like the Carpetbaggers of old during Reconstruction in the South, with one crucial difference; the Neo-Cal takeover is not backed up with Federal troops.

    Only the Wrath of God and Eternal Hell.

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  194. drJ:
    It was well-known at SWBTS that any Calvinist professors would not receive tenure as long as Patterson was president.A handful of professors left SWBTS due to this issue.All of the professors who left were great teachers who were compassionate and cared about their students and for the most part stayed out of SBC politics.

    Which is why after this Coup, they must be Purged.

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  195. Wow. They wiped out nearly the entire explanation of salvation by faith, and any mention whatsoever of sanctification. If you are a Baptist, you need to read this. Unless you are a Calvinist, you need to find a new church. Good luck with that one.

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  196. Augustine:
    Lea,

    Are you in a denominational church? Are you in the US?

    Yes to both. I’m not trying to promote it or anything, just saying if you get out of the ‘evangelical conservative’ box you might find yourself pleasantly surprised.

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  197. Max: If they are like most Southern Baptists, they don’t really give a big whoop about things like theology.But if you suggest canceling their potluck dinners, you will have a war on your hands!

    Doesn’t ha-Torah relate an incident of “selling your birthright for a mess of pottage”?

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  198. BFM reads, from the original on: “God alone is Lord of the conscience, and he has left it free from the doctrines and commandments of men which are contrary to his Word or not contained in it.”

    So, you see, the problem was seeded in the institution from the very start. They should have stopped at:

    “God alone is Lord of the conscience, and he has left it free from the doctrines and commandments of men.”

    This is the root of the corruption of the institution known as The Church. The Church unlawfully asserts control of the consciences of men and women, instituting the doctrines and commandments of men (and I do mean ‘MEN’) as ‘law’.

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  199. Lea: just saying if you get out of the ‘evangelical conservative’ box you might find yourself pleasantly surprised

    This is the cleverly constructed ‘box’ or pasture into which so-called modern day christians have been shephereded by The Church. It is all tied up with politics and power, hence its umbilical cord attached to the Republican Party. It is all about power, money and control of the thoughts, hearts, minds and bodies of the people.

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  200. It has been stated that one cannot talk politics on these threads. However, to ignore the motives and methods of politics is to ignore the root of the problem of the abusive, authoritarian Church.

    If the #metoo movement has shown us anything, it is that abuse – particularly sexual abuse – is the method of control by which men in power keep others in their power. It is traumatizing, demoralizing and renders the person nearly incapable of healthy, normal living. In other words, it creates the needy sheep that false shepherds need.

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  201. truthseeker00: Wow. They wiped out nearly the entire explanation of salvation by faith, and any mention whatsoever of sanctification. If you are a Baptist, you need to read this. Unless you are a Calvinist, you need to find a new church.

    Southern Baptists have been too trusting of their national leaders for several years. Only the most astute caught the trend toward Calvinism in the 2000 revision of the Baptist Faith and Message; those churches opted to stay with the 1963 version and not adopt BFM2000. The average Southern Baptist (the majority still non-Calvinist) doesn’t have a clue what is happening.

    On the other hand, the YRR were extremely excited about the BFM2000 as it provided them an opening to accept these subtle changes to SBC belief and practice and set up shop in SBC ranks. I have found New Calvinist pastors at SBC-YRR church plants in my area have little concern for the salvation of souls.

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  202. truthseeker00:
    I also am highly suspicious of this supposed woman who was the source of the black eyes story. I heard basically this same story many decades ago, and I am not a Southern Baptist. This is one of those stories pastors share, or pick up in pastors’ magazines. I’m sorry, but I seriously doubt there is such a woman.

    Whether there is or is not such a woman seems to be irrelevant to me. What I mean by this is that this story about the woman with the black eyes was told to promote strict complementarianism. Patterson told the story in response to a question on how someone should cancel a woman in an abusive relationship. This was Patterson’s supposed great advice to pastors on how to deal with spousal abuse. So this woman with the black eyes, real or fictional, was used as a teaching example to all who were present at that CBMW conference. And no one, not one single person back then or throughout the past nearly two decades, protested Patterson’s advice. Why? I believe it’s because misogyny and sexism are deeply rooted into the mindset of this organization, and further, throughout many segments of Evangelicalism. Any protests from pastors and leaders Within this camp is just posturing, an attempt to do damage control because the cat is out of the bag. But they will still continue to hold to their views on women without wavering. They’re playing a p.r. game to save their churches and institutions.

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  203. Daisy:
    truthseeker00 wrote:

    Even if the story was a falsified sermon illustration, IMHO, it doesn’t really matter because it’s still damaging to women: Patterson was using it to teach women they should stay in abusive marriages and put up with being hit.

    Amen, Daisy! You and I concur. Patterson’s illustrative story, true or not, is a teaching that has been destructive to women Within Christianity for far too long. It’s time to call out such a teaching as bogus and sexist.

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  204. Max: Southern Baptists have been too trusting of their national leaders for several years.

    Guilty as charged. There have been several trends in the SBC that have gone unnoticed by a good number of us. Calvinization, Politicalization, Authoritarianization, Fundanmentalization, Falwellinization, “Bibilical ” Counselingization, etc. have been going on for years without much notice.

    One of the trends that I am becoming more and more aware of is how inferior the level of education is at the seminaries than it was a generation ago. The institutions lack breadth in the faculties as they tend to hire their own. Some high-level academics have some of the weakest credentials. Limiting their faculties to only one soteriological view rather than providing a breadth of perspectives is, to me a limiting factor. SWBTS coined the term “Text Driven” and then build a school around it. Not to mention that much of what they practice looks more like indoctrination than education.

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  205. Darlene: This was Patterson’s supposed great advice to pastors on how to deal with spousal abuse. So this woman with the black eyes, real or fictional, was used as a teaching example to all who were present at that CBMW conference. And no one, not one single person back then or throughout the past nearly two decades, protested Patterson’s advice.

    Following various blogs and twitter feeds, I have seen several other accounts of Patterson telling this story in other settings as well.

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  206. Amy Smith:
    Where is the outrage about John Piper who gavethe same advice as Patterson? Piper said a woman should endure abuse for a season and getting smacked around for a night. That advice could be deadly. https://youtu.be/3OkUPc2NLrM

    That’s one of the quotes I refer to when talking with Piperites. They can never seem to believe me. I’m glad there’s a video to refer them to.

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  207. Leslie Puryear,

    Brother Puryear,

    Perhaps the last bastion for non-Calvinist Southern Baptists can be found in the small rural churches that you have focused your ministry on over the years. The New Calvinists don’t appear to be much interested in those places, preferring the suburbs and cities to set up shop. Wouldn’t it be a blessing to see a migration of people and resources from “First Baptist” churches to rural assemblies where the Gospel is still preached? The last numbers I saw indicated that Southern Baptist churches with less than 250 members represented 90% of all SBC churches. Size doesn’t matter with God. He is looking for faithfulness … and what could be more faithful than preaching the Cross of Christ for ALL people?!

    Of course, that doesn’t mean that small churches are immune from authoritarian patriarchs – some of the meanest church folks I have met in my 60+ years as a Southern Baptist were unregenerate deacons at rural churches.

    Are you seeing the Calvinization of small churches across the SBC landscape?

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  208. Max: There is very little that could be referred to as Christlike in the methodology being used by leaders of the new reformation.

    Once Christlike goes out the window, it is no longer church.

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  209. Bene D:
    The letter is at http://swbtsletter.com

    Interestingly, whoever wrote it has some technical knowledge.

    A look at WHOIS shows they used Domain Protection Services – so the purchaser/owner/letter writer can’t be traced.

    The url was registered May 5, 2018 and expires next year.

    Signing a website letter without sufficient information such as who/what doesn’t seem wise.

    Ooh… Who could the letter writer be? And now the suspense builds.

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  210. FW Rez: One of the trends that I am becoming more and more aware of is how inferior the level of education is at the seminaries than it was a generation ago.

    A well-rounded theological education is being replaced by targeted indoctrination at most SBC seminaries. Seminary students have little exposure to Truth and the various expressions of it in the American church. Instead, they are fed half-truth and mis-truth where text is taken out of context to support the theology of the moment … which is currently Calvinism. When students enroll at some SBC seminaries, they check critical thinking at the door as group-think floods their souls with error.

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  211. FW Rez: Following various blogs and twitter feeds, I have seen several other accounts of Patterson telling this story in other settings as well.

    By the way, when I say *no one* said anything or protested Patterson’s advice, I am specifically referring to people who were at that CBMW conference where he spoke. Of course we knew that Wade Burleson and the Deebs and Barbara at A Cry for Justice blog spoke out against Patterson’s advice. But now that Patterson’s words have become very public across the internet, now they are speaking out against the abuse of women. How convenient.I call that a CYA move.

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  212. As someone noted above, the Patterson wing of the SBC is dying out. They are literally dying out because many of its members are now elderly. I’m not sure that the big players like Mohler or Moore would want to go in for the kill right here because they don’t need to.

    Rather, I think some of this is partly good ole fashioned vengeance on the part of younger men who had family and friends get the axe over the re-baptism and private prayer language controversy twelve years ago. The older generation of the YRR can’t stop it, so they are riding it out. They hope if they minimally cooperate their own culpability will be overlooked by the younger guys.

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  213. Darlene: And no one, not one single person back then or throughout the past nearly two decades, protested Patterson’s advice. Why? I believe it’s because misogyny and sexism are deeply rooted into the mindset of this organization, and further, throughout many segments of Evangelicalism. Any protests from pastors and leaders Within this camp is just posturing, an attempt to do damage control because the cat is out of the bag. But they will still continue to hold to their views on women without wavering. They’re playing a p.r. game to save their churches and institutions.

    The problem is that they do not properly understand what misogyny and sexism is. If one looks at the world through the lens of ‘God made man, and woman was a mere after thought’, one cannot help but see women as the second class helpmates God ‘obviously’ intended them to be. But don’t worry, being second class is woman’s route to true fulfillment, as it is all she was ever meant to be.

    What we have now, that people did not have in the past, are tools that allow us to look at and study scripture in its original languages, with the assistance of multiple experts in those languages. We are not limited to the ‘official, orthodox interpretation’ handed down by our ‘rulers’. Most of the misconceptions taught staunchly by The Church have been engendered by mistranslations, most of which were dictated by the very same Church.

    ‘Helpmate’, ‘head’, ‘submit’ and countless other words have been ‘given’ to us, along with the well concocted definitions thereof. As always, Truth is the answer to the seeming contradictions of scripture that appear to make God out as less than good, gracious, loving and merciful. Who profits from making God out to be a sexist, misogynistic, controlling tyrant? You guessed it.

    Now that the cat is out of the bag, and women can no longer be isolated from ‘unwelcome’ ideas, it is time to ramp up the P.R. machine. Gotta make all the old, controlling ideas sound reasonable.

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  214. Leslie Puryear: I can’t find a non-baptist church that isn’t charismatic or baptizes infants. Unfortunately, that makes the SBC the only game in town for Baptists.

    I seriously think it is time for a new game.

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  215. Max: Are you seeing the Calvinization of small churches across the SBC landscape?

    I would say yes. After abandoning my former Calvinist church, I have darkened the doors of nearly everything within 65 miles that calls itself a church. The young seminarians are cutting their teeth on these small outposts, ‘rescuing’ from their ignorance and delusions and ‘winning’ them to the ‘true gospel’, i.e., Calvinism. Many of the pastors of these churches are so confused, you can tell they do not know how to think – they are merely spouting what has been drilled into their brains. Some of the ‘old guys’ who are being reformed, are also deeply confused, citing Grudem, Piper and Sproul, yet firmly believing they are not Calvinist. This is not limited to Baptist churches; they have since perfected their process and moved on to every other denomination. Many in my online circle affirm similar experiences.

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  216. Max: they check critical thinking at the door as group-think floods their souls with error.

    Which is a liability in being a joiner of anything – keeping one’s own head on straight.

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  217. Deb:
    Nan,

    I’m not at all surprised since Rachael has previously been a member of a Reformed Baptist church in the Louisville area. My initial reaction upon hearing about the petition was that I would gladly sign it.

    Now that I believe Dee and I have figured out the true intent of the petition, I will NOT be signing it.

    Ah… The true intent of the petition, now what could it be? A surreptitious calvinista takeover of the entire SBC? And if anyone thinks that the non-Calvinists in the SBC are misogynistic and sexist, just wait till the Reformed are incomplete power. Staunch Patriarchy will emerge bringing with them the supporters of ESS, the fine-tuned gender roles of Piper, the Grudem and Ware worship of sanctified testosterone, and on and on it goes. SBC – You Ain’t Seen Nothin Yet!

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  218. truthseeker00: If the #metoo movement has shown us anything, it is that abuse – particularly sexual abuse – is the method of control by which men in power keep others in their power.

    I’m not sure how that dynamic plays out. I can see how abusers quest for power to enable their misdeeds, yet they have a high risk balancing act that those same misdeeds will put their power at risk. The NY prosecutor referenced by Lydia’s article is a case in point. I’ll need a little help to understand how abuse is the tool to advance their power.

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  219. Leslie Puryear:
    Max,

    Max, you have perfectly described what is going on. The main problem, as I see it,
    Lea,

    is the people in the pew don’t care.

    Up until two years ago, I have been one of the people in the pew my whole life. They slipped this stuff in on us. I was very active in church….. paid attention…… tried to stay up to date with the goings on ……. watched the attitude changes, watch the treatment of women slowly change…….. couldn’t figure out why??????

    I wasn’t aware of the BFM2000 until 2011!!!

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  220. truthseeker00: Many of the pastors of these churches are so confused, you can tell they do not know how to think – they are merely spouting what has been drilled into their brains.

    The products of indoctrination. They tune in each day to Twitter for Piper Points, Mohler Moments, Dever Drivel, and Mahaney Malarkey. They have no sermons of their own … lost and undone, without God or His Son.

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  221. truthseeker00: I seriously think it is time for a new game.

    I expect the “Done” movement to outnumber the reformed movement soon. Done with church, but not done with Jesus. They are retreating to their homes for personal Bible study and prayer, waiting for the true prophets of God to come forth.

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  222. jyjames: keeping one’s own head on straight

    “Dear friends, do not believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit. You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world.” (1 John 4:1)

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  223. truthseeker00: Now that the cat is out of the bag, and women can no longer be isolated from ‘unwelcome’ ideas, it is time to ramp up the P.R. machine. Gotta make all the old, controlling ideas sound reasonable.

    Same thing happened back during WWII when women realized that they could build a fuselage section just as well as any crew of men.
    And yeah the toothpaste is outta’ the tube and it ain’t gettin’ shoved back in.

    No matter how hard Grudem, Piper, Ware, and the whole lot of them, double down and try to make gender roles ‘Biblical’, women (and men) are seeing it for the nonsense it is.

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  224. Max: You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world.” (1 John 4:1)

    And God’s Spirit never degrades women.

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  225. Hey! Haven’t been around much, but just stopped by to see what was up and saw this post. Thanks for asking these questions because I’ve been bothered by the same thing regarding the letter (why does it not mention the black eye thing???)

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  226. jyjames: “You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world.” (1 John 4:1)

    And God’s Spirit never degrades women.

    “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ” (Romans 8:16-17)

    Joint-heirs with Christ are treated equally in His Kingdom; He promised that by a covenant written with His blood. Over the centuries, various church kingdoms have surbordinated believers by race, class and/or gender in which they were not treated as joint-heirs with Christ. Jesus sets us free – some churches will attempt to take you back to bondage.

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  227. Lea,

    They can sound so reasonable if you’re not already suspicious and paying close attention. I think they capitalize on people’s busyness. Like my near and dear was listening to a recorded Christmas sermon someone had sent him by Doug Wilson, long after we’d left patriarchy for soft comp (though he still attends the soft comp church with some of our family, I had to stop going because of mentions of Wilson and Piper, for starters, and the elders nodding wisely at me when I mentioned my concerns), and he talked about how biblical and encouraging the message was…

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  228. Max: If they are like most Southern Baptists, they don’t really give a big whoop about things like theology.But if you suggest canceling their potluck dinners, you will have a war on your hands!

    So if someone started a social movement grounded on potlucks (say, using the Meetup app), it sounds like a lot of folks wouldn’t need churches at all!

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  229. Thersites: I’m not sure how that dynamic plays out. I can see how abusers quest for power to enable their misdeeds, yet they have a high risk balancing act that those same misdeeds will put their power at risk. The NY prosecutor referenced by Lydia’s article is a case in point. I’ll need a little help to understand how abuse is the tool to advance their power.

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    It’s called ‘trauma-based mind control’, and there is a good deal of research on the topic. Some would assert this gets into tinfoil hat territory, yet there is a good deal of documentation on government research into such ‘mind control’. With the recent exposure of Ailes, Weinstein, Nassar, and so, so many more, perhaps those who have been written off as crazy conspiracists will finally get a hearing. The issue has been much longer recognized in England and Europe, involving private boarding schools, orphanages, leading politicians and local police districts. It is my personal opinion that behind much of the sexual abuse and pedophilia in Hollywood, sports, the media, politics and, yes, the church is an attempt to traumatize and control people for various nefarious purposes. Many are asking ‘Why is this so pervasive?’ but few are willing to entertain answers that make all of us uncomfortable, that it is more about power than perversion. It is, IMO, more of a stretch to believe that a bunch of perverts just so happened to land in all of the positions of power in every arena of culture. But everyone has a right to their own beliefs.

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  230. BJ:
    I read through all the names that signed the letter last night to see if anyone from my church signed it.I found it interesting that the church most heavily represented from the Dallas area was The Village Church.Wow, did they all sign a letter saying that Matt Chandler should step down when he showed such incredibly poor judgement with the child porn guy.Paige Patterson’s joke about the 16 year old was in very poor taste and totally inappropriate as were his comments about abused women, but Matt Chandler et al, encouraged church members to embrace a pedophile and didn’t tell them about his child porn addiction.That is just as bad if not worse!Step down Matt!

    Excellent point.

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  231. Leslie Puryear: What might that look like?

    If you mean ‘a new game’, I honestly do not know. I just know that I have lost all faith in the corrupt institution known as The Church, and perhaps even in that which is known as ‘Christianity’. Don’t get me wrong, they both contain a great element of truth; but it is always corrupt and corrupting.

    Personally, I will never give up on God, on goodness, justice, mercy and trying to learn to love my neighbor more and self less. I’m just not looking to The Church anymore for answers.

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  232. refugee: So if someone started a social movement grounded on potlucks (say, using the Meetup app), it sounds like a lot of folks wouldn’t need churches at all!

    If only that were a joke. I cannot tell you how many weary people have told me that they would leave The Church – if they only had something meaningful to put in its place.

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  233. truthseeker00: Some of the ‘old guys’ who are being reformed, are also deeply confused, citing Grudem, Piper and Sproul, yet firmly believing they are not Calvinist. This is not limited to Baptist churches; they have since perfected their process and moved on to every other denomination.

    Your comment is absolutely true. But, if you really want to have your mind blown, think about this for a minute: the FREEWILL baptist church in our town is now a 9-Marx, Neo-Cal church (even including getting rid of their invitations/altar calls)! Theologically, I’d like to see just what kind of back flips they have to do to make that all work!
    Fortunately, the little baptist church I attend (which is SBC) still preaches that Jesus died for everyone, and that He will save anyone who calls on Him! We had a time where that was challenged, but that pastor left us rather abruptly when we exposed his plans to “Calvinize” us! For some reason, they don’t like their deeds being exposed for all to see. And if that’s the case, then maybe they shouldn’t be trying to sneak in and take over churches!

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  234. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar):
    Ken A,

    IN the 1963 version, there is no Article XVIII, nothing saying that the husband is the servant-leader and that the wife must graciously submit.

    That makes sense, considering the timing of the rise of comp theology I’ve read about. Something about a 70s-era reaction against the feminist “equal treatment” secular social movement.

    I still don’t get how a woman receiving significantly less pay for doing the same job a man might do can possibly be construed as a good thing, for one example.

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  235. Max,

    I know that truthseeker00 has weighed in on your question about calvinism in small churches in the affirmative. I can only speak to what’s happening in North Carolina where I pastor. A lot of the pastors of small churches rely on graduates of Southeastern to become their pastors. As a result, we’re seeing more and more Calvinists in our churches. We are also seeing more churches splitting due to the teaching of Limited Atonement, Unconditional Election, Elder leadership and other tenets of Calvinism.

    Some may say that the churches don’t know what they believe and to some extent, that may be true. But from my experience, the churches do know what they don’t believe and they do not believe what Calvinists are teaching. What I have seen is that Calvinist pastors won’t tell a search committee what they believe nor what they plan to do to change a church to become a Calvinist church. The Search Committee will ask simplistic questions and if the applicant is a Southern Baptist and has graduated from a Southern Baptist seminary, they assume he believes the same way they do so they hire him. Once hired, the Calvinist will slowly but surely reveal through sermons, bible studies, etc., what he really believes and begin to try to change the church polity. At some point, he will attempt to replace deacons with elders, eliminate congregationalism, and stop altar calls. Once elders are in place, there is no need for a democratic polity because the elders will make all of the decisions. Once this happens, the church will finally wake up to what has happened. The usual result is a huge church fight. That is happening in many small churches in North Carolina.

    Recently, I received a call from a pastor search committee in Georgia that wanted advice on what they could do to avoid calling a Calvinist pastor. They weren’t sure what questions to ask or how to identify someone who held to Calvinist beliefs. I spent several days working with them via telephone to help them identify a pastor who would be aligned with their beliefs. This was encouraging to me. It tells me that churches are becoming more aware of making a mistake by hiring a pastor that is vastly different theologically than they are. Also, I have noticed in our state paper, the Biblical Recorder, some of the church ads for pastors have specified they are looking for a non-Calvinist pastor.

    To me, the bottom line is the education of pastor search committees. If they just want to hurry through the process and hire just anybody, Calvinist pastors will grow. However, if they want to protect their church from theology which is diametrically opposed to their own, they will take the time to identify the best fit for their church.

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  236. truthseeker00,

    I understand your frustration but I pray you will not stop going to a bible-believing church. We need each other to grow in Christ and serve Him together. We’re also told not to “forsake the assembling of ourselves together as is the manner of some.” (Heb. 10:25). I believe there are many good non-denominational churches around. I would encourage you to keep looking and ask the Lord to lead you to the church where He wants to work through you.

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  237. truthseeker00: If only that were a joke. I cannot tell you how many weary people have told me that they would leave The Church – if they only had something meaningful to put in its place.

    From what I’ve read here and other places, people have been leaving churches and finding something much more meaningful.

    It’s the initial leaving that’s hard. Ironic, isn’t it, that to find the “life, and that abundantly” that Jesus promised, first you have to leave the organized church far behind.

    Actually, on second thought, it makes sense.

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  238. refugee: So if someone started a social movement grounded on potlucks (say, using the Meetup app), it sounds like a lot of folks wouldn’t need churches at all!

    I know Max likes to make cracks at the potlucks, but I think that’s a good chunk of what church *should* be. Fellowship, breaking bread…that’s built into the cake. If you take that away you are taking away something that matters.

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  239. Leslie Puryear: Once hired, the Calvinist will slowly but surely reveal through sermons, bible studies, etc., what he really believes and begin to try to change the church polity. At some point, he will attempt to replace deacons with elders, eliminate congregationalism, and stop altar calls. Once elders are in place, there is no need for a democratic polity because the elders will make all of the decisions. Once this happens, the church will finally wake up to what has happened. The usual result is a huge church fight. That is happening in many small churches in North Carolina.

    This is exactly what was attempted at our little church in Ohio as well. The candidate came from Southern Seminary and he used a lot of the same terminology, but something was always just a shade off. It wasn’t until we sat him down and flat-out asked him what he believed. It was then that he admitted he was a five-point Calvinist. Fortunately, he didn’t have time to change all the polity and move from deacons to elders, etc. Most of the church had no clue, but the Holy Spirit was working and moving to guard us from error. When that pastor realized he would get nowhere with us, he grabbed up his toys and went home!

    BTW-the pastor that replaced him went through the wringer with our search committee! Every candidate was given around 100 questions to answer (many of them about Calvinism and authoritarianism), and if they didn’t want to answer them–they were immediately disqualified!

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  240. Leslie Puryear:
    truthseeker00,

    I understand your frustration but I pray you will not stop going to a bible-believing church. We need each other to grow in Christ and serve Him together. We’re also told not to “forsake the assembling of ourselves together as is the manner of some.” (Heb. 10:25). I believe there are many good non-denominational churches around. I would encourage you to keep looking and ask the Lord to lead you to the church where He wants to work through you.

    Happily, the assembling you mentioned does not have to take place inside the walls of a church. There is that little verse that says “for wherever two or more are gathered…”

    Maybe I’m taking it out of context. Please let me know if I did. I still have trouble opening a Bible these days. Churchianity has left a terrible taste in my mouth.

    However, I memorized swaths of scripture in my time there. It has been interesting to read other interpretations than what I was taught/indoctrinated to believe about women/culture/gender/etc.

    But I still feel like throwing up at the thought of opening my Bible, even to check how the verses and context line up with the various interpretations.

    Our previous hyper-cal church would likely explain it away as me not being among the elect. (What’s that doctrine that explains committed churchgoers who are not elect even though they think they are?)

    The soft-comp church with neo-cal leanings (adulation of Piper and Ware and CS Lewis) would be more charitable, I expect, and merely call me backslidden.

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  241. refugee: I still don’t get how a woman receiving significantly less pay for doing the same job a man might do can possibly be construed as a good thing, for one example.

    He needs to feed his family.
    She has a husband.

    *stuff Ive heard in churches regarding why *they* wont pay women better*

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  242. truthseeker00: If you mean ‘a new game’, I honestly do not know. I just know that I have lost all faith in the corrupt institution known as The Church, and perhaps even in that which is known as ‘Christianity’. Don’t get me wrong, they both contain a great element of truth; but it is always corrupt and corrupting.

    Personally, I will never give up on God, on goodness, justice, mercy and trying to learn to love my neighbor more and self less. I’m just not looking to The Church anymore for answers.

    I have heard stories of and from increasing numbers of Dones who are working out their faith outside the walls of an institution.

    God is so much bigger than the boxes men build to keep him in.

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  243. Background on the 1998 Amendment, which served as a trial run for the the many other shifts in the BFM enacted in 2000:

    http://www.bpnews.net/1691/elliff-names-study-committee-for-baptist-faith-and-message

    “February 3, 1998…A seven-member committee to recommend a possible family article addition to the Baptist Faith and Message document has been named, according to Tom Elliff, Southern Baptist Convention president…’I have chosen a committee that represents a broad spectrum of Baptist life. They are pastors, state executive directors, agency head, and wives'”

    The committee of seven Elliff appointed to craft the amendment were:

    his brother Bill Elliff, pastor of First Baptist Church, Little Rock, Ark.
    O.D. “Damon” Shook, pastor of Champion Forest Baptist Church, Houston

    Anthony Jordan, executive director of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma
    John Sullivan, executive director of the Florida Baptist Convention

    Richard Land, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, SBC

    Mary Mohler, Louisville, Ky.
    Dorothy Patterson, Wake Forest, N.C.”

    Photo, committee chairman Anthony Jordan and Mrs. Albert Mohler look on as Mrs. Paige Patterson holds forth on her complementarianism agenda:

    http://i41.tinypic.com/juwfvt.jpg

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  244. Mary27:
    Divorce Minister,

    In the case of our daughter, it meant that she would be permitted to separate for a time (not more than 6 weeks) in order for them to have couples marriage counseling (which she had already endured for 9 years) and then she would be required to go back into the abusive marriage. Her ex would of course put on his “repentance act” and from the point of view of the church it would be a success story. “Allowing separation for abuse” is a misrepresentation of the reality of what happens… in the end the abused wife is forced to return. The goal is always to get them back together under the same roof. They also misrepresent the idea that God only allows divorce for adultery. In reality, if the immoral spouse “repents” then the abused wife is required to forgive and return.

    The thought I’m going back to someone who slapped me around, punched me with his fists, causing me to live in fear on a daily basis is unconscionable. Anyone who counsels in such a manner should have to endure being slapped and punched just to experience what it feels like. And these complementarians always want to talk about marriage being a reflection of Christ and the church. So when, pray tell, does Jesus slap around and punch the church? I’m so glad I’m not a part of these Christian circles. It’s all so repulsive to me.

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  245. Jerome: Mary Mohler, Louisville, Ky.
    Dorothy Patterson, Wake Forest, N.C.”

    This whole ‘wives’ thing is so creepy to me. The only women allowed in the room are spouses.

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  246. Darlene: And these complementarians always want to talk about marriage being a reflection of Christ and the church. So when, pray tell, does Jesus slap around and punch the church?

    It is absolute lunacy.

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  247. Leslie Puryear: I understand your frustration but I pray you will not stop going to a bible-believing church. We need each other to grow in Christ and serve Him together. We’re also told not to “forsake the assembling of ourselves together as is the manner of some.” (Heb. 10:25). I believe there are many good non-denominational churches around. I would encourage you to keep looking and ask the Lord to lead you to the church where He wants to work through you.

    Leslie, I get this exact speech from my spouse weekly. 🙂 And, hopeless as it seems, I keep trying. But pretty soon, I am going to run out of churches. Having many friends who tried the home church route, which always failed, I haven’t great hopes for that as well. Some, who have walked this path before me, have suggested I may need to seek community in something other than a church. Surprising as it is to many waking conservative fundamentalists, there are a lot of people who love God but reject The Church. For reasons we now see.

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  248. Lea: I know Max likes to make cracks at the potlucks, but I think that’s a good chunk of what church *should* be. Fellowship, breaking bread…that’s built into the cake. If you take that away you are taking away something that matters.

    Having those pot lucks at church also takes a number of women out of church services. I know. I was kitchen team leader for several years. Our team missed a lot of services because we were busy in the church kitchen.

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  249. Max: The SBC is a non-prophet organization.

    When the SBC replaced “Priesthood of the Believer” to “Priesthood of Believers”, this was the result.

    Very clever wording. 🙂

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  250. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar): Having those pot lucks at church also takes a number of women out of church services. I know. I was kitchen team leader for several years. Our team missed a lot of services because we were busy in the church kitchen.

    This is a fair point. I really meant more eating together.

    There are ways to do things that don’t put the burden on only one group, I think. But you have to actually think about it. I thought it was odd initially that my church has staff who cook meals for events but I see where it helps now. It certainly takes a lot of stress off people. (we do still have potluck on one occasion but it is organized in a way that I don’t think takes people out of service)

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  251. Leslie Puryear: At some point, he will attempt to replace deacons with elders, eliminate congregationalism, and stop altar calls. Once elders are in place, there is no need for a democratic polity because the elders will make all of the decisions. Once this happens, the church will finally wake up to what has happened. The usual result is a huge church fight. That is happening in many small churches in North Carolina.

    Ok…but how does the pastor gain so much power to begin with? He’s paid by the church, he was selected by committee, the deacons could vote him out….something is not adding up.

    This can only be happening because a majority in the denomination want it to happen.

    Maybe it’s not a Calvinist takeover, maybe the grassroots church has been co-opted long before this. They’ve been fed a steady diet of separation from the world, how evil the world is, how you are a persecuted minority, how special you are and the only reason everyone isn’t a Christian like you is that they are hopelessly lost.

    Keep in mind, being Christian isn’t enough, you have to be the same type of Christian.

    I don’t know about Baptists but that’s the Assembly of God church my wife attends.

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  252. Whoa, my first comment in a while.

    After seeing the interesting tweet from the WHOIS results, I studied the signatories of the swbtsletter.com page. There are 65 signatures from The Village Church including Lore Ferguson Wilbert and Lauren Chandler and 60 from The Summit. And it’s not because they’re big, I see single-digits results for NewSpring, Lake Pointe, Woodlands, Elevation, etc. So now I’m convinced it’s political.

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  253. Augustine: I used to think that to be egalitatian you were a liberal, card caring, flag waving, man-despising feminist.

    But why? It’s as if many of us have been taught there is only black vs. white with no in between . . .

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  254. Deb: When the SBC replaced “Priesthood of the Believer” to “Priesthood of Believers”, this was the result.

    Very clever wording.

    The Collective, Comrades.
    Individual cells in the hive mind are utterly expendable.

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  255. Leslie Puryear: I understand your frustration but I pray you will not stop going to a bible-believing church.

    Just what is “Bible-Believing(TM)”?
    These days it means either Abusive Fundamentalist or Meaningless Buzzword.

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  256. truthseeker00: Many are asking ‘Why is this so pervasive?’ but few are willing to entertain answers that make all of us uncomfortable, that it is more about power than perversion. It is, IMO, more of a stretch to believe that a bunch of perverts just so happened to land in all of the positions of power in every arena of culture.

    I’m more inclined to go with abusers have an additional motivation to accumulate power, many seem single minded in their quest for positions that enable them to abuse. That said, I’m interested in your reference to “trauma-based mind control” for further research. I’ve run into my share of nutcases and the more understanding the better.

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  257. truthseeker00: Many of the pastors of these churches are so confused, you can tell they do not know how to think – they are merely spouting what has been drilled into their brains.

    doubleplusduckspeak — reciting the Party Line without engaging any neuron above the brainstem.
    Like Pavlov’s dogs. Stimulus —> Response, Stimulus —> Response, Stimulus —> Response.

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  258. truthseeker00: Now that the cat is out of the bag, and women can no longer be isolated from ‘unwelcome’ ideas, it is time to ramp up the P.R. machine. Gotta make all the old, controlling ideas sound reasonable.

    Once more, it all comes down to “Who Gets to Hold the Whip?”

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  259. Max: Perhaps the last bastion for non-Calvinist Southern Baptists can be found in the small rural churches that you have focused your ministry on over the years. The New Calvinists don’t appear to be much interested in those places, preferring the suburbs and cities to set up shop.

    Not enough MONEY in those rubes.

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  260. Jack: Ok…but how does the pastor gain so much power to begin with?He’s paid by the church, he was selected by committee, the deacons could vote him out….something is not adding up.

    I’m afraid in the churches I’ve seen, it’s even more sinister than that. The bigger churches seed the congregation with sudden “transfers” to “replant” the church. They get enough people to swing the vote. They often don’t tell the congregation that these people have been moved there on purpose. This happened in my former church.

    In smaller churches, of the few I know about, they just took over, usually by gaining control of the budget. Most smaller churches are disorganized enough that if you know the playbook, it’s not hard to take over.

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  261. Amy Smith:
    Where is the outrage about John Piper who gavethe same advice as Patterson? Piper said a woman should endure abuse for a season and getting smacked around for a night. That advice could be deadly. https://youtu.be/3OkUPc2NLrM

    Piper gets a free ride. YouTube is full of his outlandish teaching. He’s much more influential and dangerous than Paige Patterson but he’s never called out for any of it. Just don’t hold your breath waiting for criticism to be directed toward John Piper.

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  262. JDV,

    There’s more biblical evidence to preach without any remuneration than to even have a “church roll” to start with. I would deem it a high honor to be removed from any roll with Patterson or Dever’s name attached to it.

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  263. Steve: Piper gets a free ride. YouTube is full of his outlandish teaching.

    Apparently he was telling someone with anorexia to hate her body. So add that to the pile.

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  264. I think it’s hilarious to hear these guys talk about kicking people off their church rolls but abused wives are supposed to stay and take their punches.

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  265. Stan: There are 65 signatures from The Village Church including Lore Ferguson Wilbert and Lauren Chandler

    Matt Chandler calls VC female members “our girls.” I bet he’s mighty proud of his girls banding together to take the great white hunter down.

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  266. Divorce Minister,

    Wade, I just read your article from Sunday’s post, and I hope others do:
    http://www.wadeburleson.org/2018/05/the-real-problem-in-sbc-is-not-paige.html

    Several years ago, I read that the SBC had pulled missionaries out of the field on the matter of charismatic gifts—interesting that Paige Patterson is behind much of it. The SBC’s mission budget has also declined, and this denomination has had one of the biggest commitments to missions. What’s going on? I’m also noticing, thanks to the Deebs, that SBC is becoming reformed. Are the reformed weak on missions, or does cessationism (denial of the gifts) drive them? Or what.

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  267. Lea: I know Max likes to make cracks at the potlucks, but I think that’s a good chunk of what church *should* be. Fellowship, breaking bread…that’s built into the cake. If you take that away you are taking away something that matters.

    Agreed. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the fellowship with other believers at countless potluck dinners over the past 60+ years. We call them “carry-in dinners” in SBC life, where members carry-in food fit for a king … it’s an opportunity for folks to share their bragging dishes. I’ve loved sampling those, except the gooseberry pie that caught me off guard one time! The average Southern Baptist wouldn’t give that tradition up without a fight … and I would be in there slugging with them. Now getting most of them to a Bible study and prayer meeting is another thing …

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  268. ishy: I’m afraid in the churches I’ve seen, it’s even more sinister than that. The bigger churches seed the congregation with sudden “transfers” to “replant” the church. They get enough people to swing the vote.

    The old “knock-and-drag the Projects on Election Day”.

    Also tried by the Rajneeshes when they tried to take over Antelope, Oregon some years ago. My informant from Redding, CA (350mi/550km south of Antelope) said that the Rajneeshees sent buses down that far to scoop up the local homeless, take them back to Rajneeshpuram/Antelope, and get them on the voter rolls.

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  269. Leslie Puryear,

    Thank you Pastor Puryear for your perspective on the Calvinist takeover of small churches in North Carolina. Many others who comment on TWW have reported similar stories of the stealth used by New Calvinist pastors in their areas to deceive their way into traditional SBC churches. The passion demonstrated by YRR and their leaders to plant reformed theology in non-Calvinist SBC churches through control, manipulation, and deception is a misplaced passion. As you note, the average Southern Baptist may not be theologically skilled enough to detect the subtle shifts in teaching leading to Calvinization of their churches, but they darn well know when the Cross of Christ is not being preached!

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  270. Leslie Puryear: We’re also told not to “forsake the assembling of ourselves together as is the manner of some.”

    Believers in many American churches are challenged to balance that Scripture with “Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins.” These are tough days; we need a genuine revival to purge the church of deceit and deceivers … may God raise up a new breed of messengers capable of bringing that in!

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  271. “Former First Baptist Church Charlotte pastor Mark Harris defeated Rep. Robert Pittenger in Tuesday’s primary in North Carolina’s 9th District.”

    I had no idea there were so many rednecks in and around Charlotte. The SBC machine is powerful. At least it is in the south.

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  272. Ted:
    Divorce Minister,

    Wade, I just read your article from Sunday’s post, and I hope others do:
    http://www.wadeburleson.org/2018/05/the-real-problem-in-sbc-is-not-paige.html

    Several years ago, I read that the SBC had pulled missionaries out of the field on the matter of charismatic gifts—interesting that Paige Patterson is behind much of it.The SBC’s mission budget has also declined, and this denomination has had one of the biggest commitments to missions.What’s going on?I’m also noticing, thanks to the Deebs, that SBC is becoming reformed.Are the reformed weak on missions, or does cessationism (denial of the gifts) drive them?Or what.

    The reformed we knew saw little value in missions. People are elect, or they’re not.

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  273. Lea: I know Max likes to make cracks at the potlucks, but I think that’s a good chunk of what church *should* be. Fellowship, breaking bread…that’s built into the cake. If you take that away you are taking away something that matters.

    I agree!

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  274. Lea: I know Max likes to make cracks at the potlucks, but I think that’s a good chunk of what church *should* be. Fellowship, breaking bread…that’s built into the cake. If you take that away you are taking away something that matters.

    These days it might be ALL that matters.

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  275. Stan,

    I found some more. 29 signatories are from Imago Dei Church, including Tony Merida’s wife Kimberly. 92 are from Sojourn Community Church. Don’t both of these churches have strong CJ Mahaney connections?

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  276. The “traditionalists” have a petition up in support of PP. There’s a link to it on SBCToday. Last time I checked, it had 129 signatures …… if you count Stormy Daniels.

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  277. Ted,

    “the SBC had pulled missionaries out of the field on the matter of charismatic gifts…

    The SBC’s mission budget has also declined, and this denomination has had one of the biggest commitments to missions. What’s going on? I’m also noticing, thanks to the Deebs, that SBC is becoming reformed. Are the reformed weak on missions, or does cessationism (denial of the gifts) drive them? Or what.”
    ++++++++++++++++++

    perhaps what drives them is fear of not being able to fund their SBC white collar retirement.

    siphon off mission dollars. less missionaries requiring funds.

    reformed is the trend gaining traction, which means more giving units.

    i’d say money and power are what drives them.

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  278. Steve,

    “Anyway, why must the SBC do everything so secretly?”
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    because being driven by money and power is totally the wrong image.

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  279. Deb: When the SBC replaced “Priesthood of the Believer” to “Priesthood of Believers”, this was the result.

    Very clever wording.

    Please jog my memory. What does the sleight of hand change? What does the pluralization of believer and the removal of the article the mean?

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  280. Willow Creek Elders (today) “The tone of our first response had too much emphasis on defending Bill and cast some of the women in an unfair and negative light. We are sorry. Initially, it was stated that the stories were all lies and the individuals involved were colluding against Bill. We apologize for those sweeping statements. We do not believe the stories were all lies or that all the people were colluding against him. It takes courage for a woman to step forward and share her story, and we are doing everything we can to listen respectfully.”

    https://www.willowcreek.org/en/elder-update-two

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  281. Lea: Apparently he was telling someone with anorexia to hate her body. So add that to the pile.

    What????? Was this one of his crazy tweets? Or him pontificating at Desiring God?

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  282. Darlene: Deb: When the SBC replaced “Priesthood of the Believer” to “Priesthood of Believers”, this was the result.

    Very clever wording.

    Please jog my memory. What does the sleight of hand change? What does the pluralization of believer and the removal of the article the mean?

    Russell Dilday provides a good analysis of that in the section “The diminishing of soul competency and the priesthood of the believer” at: http://pastarticles.christianethicstoday.com/CETArt/index.cfm?fuseaction=Articles.main&ArtID=582

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  283. Deb,

    That is more than clever, that is down right diabolical… Only a thoughtful read of that change, which most people will not catch, will “get it”…. that is a HUGH change… especially when you look at their overall change…

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  284. Darlene,

    It allows the leaders to define who the “believers” are. When it is singular, you just need to say, “I am a believer” and you are a priest…. Now, the leaders get to say who the “believers” are… if you do not do such and such, like sign a church covenant, you are not really a “believer”…..

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  285. Jeffrey Chalmers:
    Darlene,

    It allows the leaders to define who the “believers” are. When it is singular, you just need to say, “I am a believer” and you are a priest….Now, the leaders get tosay who the “believers” are…if you do not do such and such, like sign a church covenant, you are not really a “believer”…..

    Ah, so those who hold the keys are in control.

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  286. Leslie Puryear: To me, the bottom line is the education of pastor search committees.

    The power of the pastor search committee, yes, in being clear about theology (teaching: Piper, Wilson, Patterson) as well as practice (relationships: Pressler, Hybels, Savage). Because one can’t be too careful in the selection of leadership when it comes to track record, motive, history.

    https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/why-male-allies-abuse-women_us_5af35072e4b04d3b2c903373

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  287. Darlene,

    That is how I read the change…. a core concept of the reformation is that we do not need a preist to interact with G$d…. we do not need a “confessional” that only “works” when a preist is sitting on the other side….. .. that simple change in wording begs the question… who “are” the believers, and not one person, but the “collective” is now the preist that comunicates with G$d….

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  288. Leslie Puryear,

    it could be that when a church refuses the gifts of the Holy Spirit (because of outlandish misuse by some charismatics) the result is a church that digs in deeper to works and rules and regulations even to the point of not caring when women and children are harmed as long as the men are following the rules. Living Word or dead letter of the law

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  289. Jeffrey Chalmers: a core concept of the reformation is that we do not need a preist to interact with G$d…. we do not need a “confessional” that only “works” when a preist is sitting on the other side….. .. that simple change in wording begs the question… who “are” the believers, and not one person, but the “collective” is now the preist that comunicates with G$d….

    I’m pretty sure God made this clear in scripture, way before the Reformation.

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  290. Darlene: Ah, so those who hold the keys are in control.

    Thinking Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life (and holds the keys). No one comes to the Father but through Him.

    Jesus left Earth and sent His Holy Spirit to indwell believers, the team. (Evidenced by love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Each gifted for the team, with: prophecy, service, teaching, exhortation, giving, leadership, mercy, wisdom, knowledge, faith, healing, miracles, discernment, languages, interpretation, apostling, evangelism, pastoring.)

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  291. Jeffrey Chalmers: a core concept of the reformation is that we do not need a priest to interact with G$d…

    Reformed = direct access to God through Jesus, and furthermore, indwelt and gifted by God’s Holy Spirit. Like in the Good Ole’ Days of Acts.

    A church labeling itself, “Reformed” – is a bit confusing. What does that particular church mean by calling itself “Reformed”?

    Even more confusing, we have a friend that calls himself “Dutch Reformed” though he is local here in the US, (windmills? clogs? Gouda cheese? split the bill? bicycling? tulips?).

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  292. truthseeker00:
    I also am highly suspicious of this supposed woman who was the source of the black eyes story. I heard basically this same story many decades ago, and I am not a Southern Baptist. This is one of those stories pastors share, or pick up in pastors’ magazines. I’m sorry, but I seriously doubt there is such a woman.

    I, too, feel that it was probably just a story he picked up somewhere, but shouldn’t that be a problem in and of itself, not only for a Pastor but for the head of a Seminary? Should we not expect and demand, that preachers actually tell the truth in the pulpit?

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  293. Top notch religion writer Sarah Pulliam Bailey teamed up with another top notch religion writer Michelle Boorstein, and Julie Zauzmer in her article published in The Chicago Tribune/ Washington Post May 7th.
    Her article seems to indicate she may know wrote the letter,(directly or indirectly) and that fear of reprisal was motivation for one organizer of the effort to stay hidden.

    “The women who wrote the open letter say they tried first to speak to seminary trustees, but felt they had to make their concerns public to be taken seriously, said one woman who works for a high-ranking leader in a Southern Baptist organization and spoke on the condition of anonymity because she feared her participation in organizing the letter could jeopardize her job.”

    So now what? If the SBC doesn’t take this effort seriously and Patterson gets a slap on the wrist or skates, how does this petition translate into action for the writers, organizers and those who signed it?

    On another note, Wade Burleson has Part One of Dr. Sheri Klouda’s story up on his blog.
    Even the commenters at his blog are scared.

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  294. FW Rez,

    That is my position as well. Patterson was telling this story, even if it may have varied in details any time he told it, to coach and indoctrinate women into thinking they had no choice but to stay in an abusive marriage.

    It was a pedagogical tool to brain wash Christian women, so whether or not the story itself was based on an actual event, or was embellished, is beside the point.

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  295. Muff Potter: Patterson ignored common decency and issued downright dangerous and irresponsible statements to scores if not hundreds of Southern Baptist women who may live with violent abusers.
    Had one of them been beaten to death in the ensuing idiocy, he’d have blood on his hands.

    I’d also add on-going or consistent verbal and emotional abuse. Having to live with someone who repeatedly abuses you in that manner can be very harmful as well, and you have to put distance between yourself and that person.

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  296. Mary27,

    Mary27: In the case of our daughter, it meant that she would be permitted to separate for a time (not more than 6 weeks) in order for them to have couples marriage counseling (which she had already endured for 9 years) and then she would be required to go back into the abusive marriage. Her ex would of course put on his “repentance act” and from the point of view of the church it would be a success story. “Allowing separation for abuse” is a misrepresentation of the reality of what happens… in the end the abused wife is forced to return. The goal is always to get them back together under the same roof. They also misrepresent the idea that God only allows divorce for adultery. In reality, if the immoral spouse “repents” then the abused wife is required to forgive and return.

    I just thought this bore repeating.
    It is so sick what some Christians do to other people – expecting abused women to stay in an abusive marriage no matter what, so warped.

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  297. Muslin, fka Deana Holmes,

    Didn’t Piper offer that slight walk back only after many months (or years) and/or input from lots of people who told him how awful his first set of comments were? If that is so, I don’t want to acknowledge his second set of comments.

    His true views are reflected in the “you must endure abuse for a season” commentary. That’s what he really thinks, until he got blow back from everyone and their grandma.

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  298. Augustine: I used to think that to be egalitatian you were a liberal, card caring, flag waving, man-despising feminist.

    I’ve said before that gender complementarians set up that false dichotomy. Even when I began having doubts about comp, and those doubts grew and grew over my 20s and into my 30s, one reason I remain stuck in complementarianism (before finally rejecting it later) is because I had been brain washed by complementarians to think that rejecting comp left me with only one other choice: to be a man-hating, liberal feminist.

    I’ve always been conservative, not liberal, so I thought, well, if I leave comp, I don’t want to be a liberal.

    I now realize that rejecting complementarianism does not necessitate becoming a liberal or a man-hating feminist who never shaves her legs.

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  299. Daisy,

    Exactly. I am also conservative and certainly do not hate men! I can never understand why people lump ideas together. This is one of the ways comps attack egalitarians.I have always been an egalitarian while at the same time espousing conservative views theologically and in other respects.

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  300. drstevej: Willow Creek Elders (today) “The tone of our first response had too much emphasis on defending Bill and cast some of the women in an unfair and negative light. We are sorry. Initially, it was stated that the stories were all lies and the individuals involved were colluding against Bill. We apologize for those sweeping statements. We do not believe the stories were all lies or that all the people were colluding against him.

    We called all the women liars and now ‘we apologize for those sweeping statements’ is all they get?

    Not good enough.

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  301. drstevej: Willow Creek Elders (today) “The tone of our first response had too much emphasis on defending Bill and cast some of the women in an unfair and negative light.”

    These WC elders are not coming across as very elder.

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  302. Daisy: I now realize that rejecting complementarianism does not necessitate becoming a liberal or a man-hating feminist who never shaves her legs.

    ARMPITS if you’re a REAL X-Treme Feminist.

    Ever wish you could strand every factions’ Lunatic Fringe onto a desert island where they could Righteously kill each other off and leave all the rest of use to just Live Our Lives?

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  303. Daisy:
    Headless Unicorn Guy,

    Unless one comes to realize how useless the equally yoked teaching is. Once one ditches that, it opens up a whole new world of genuinely moral, kind Non-Christian men that single women can date and marry.

    And genuinely decent women that single men can date and marry.

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  304. jyjames: Reformed = direct access to God through Jesus, and furthermore, indwelt and gifted by God’s Holy Spirit. Like in the Good Ole’ Days of Acts.

    A church labeling itself, “Reformed” – is a bit confusing. What does that particular church mean by calling itself “Reformed”?

    That They’re the Only Genuine Christians, of course.
    “I THANK THEE, LOOORD, THAT WE ARE NOTHING LIKE THOSE FILTHY ROMISH PAPISTS OVER THERE…”

    Treaty of Wesphalia ended the Reformation Wars in 1648, and some STILL haven’t gotten the news.

    Even more confusing, we have a friend that calls himself “Dutch Reformed” though he is local here in the US, (windmills? clogs? Gouda cheese? split the bill? bicycling? tulips?).

    TULIPs, definitely.

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  305. jyjames: Thinking Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life (and holds the keys). No one comes to the Father but through Him.

    I hope you realize I was being sarcastic. I am well aware that Jesus is the one who holds the keys. But I’m inclined to think from all that I’ve read that New Calvinists believe that a certain privileged class holds the keys.

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  306. Daisy:
    FW Rez,

    That is my position as well. Patterson was telling this story, even if it may have varied in details any time he told it, to coach and indoctrinate women into thinking they had no choice but to stay in an abusive marriage.

    It was a pedagogical tool to brain wash Christian women, so whether or not the story itself was based on an actual event, or was embellished, is beside the point.

    Exactly, Daisy! The story, true or not, reveals the deep-seated, aberrant theology that Patterson believes and teaches. And I believe it is the same aberrant theology that many who are calling for his removal still believe.

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  307. Darlene: I am well aware that Jesus is the one who holds the keys. But I’m inclined to think from all that I’ve read that New Calvinists believe that a certain privileged class holds the keys.

    GUESS WHO?

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  308. Daisy: I’d also add on-going or consistent verbal and emotional abuse.

    In many ways, verbal/emotional abuse is worse. There is NO physical evidence, maximizing Plausible Deniability and ease of grooming third-party allies/faithful minions.

    Having to live with someone who repeatedly abuses you in that manner can be very harmful as well, and you have to put distance between yourself and that person.

    There’s a reason my last known contact with my brother was when the first LOTR movie came out…

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  309. Leslie Puryear: We’re also told not to “forsake the assembling of ourselves together as is the manner of some.”

    Problem is, that goes directly against the Gospel of Personal Salvation and ONLY Personal Salvation.

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  310. sandyc: Leslie Puryear,
    it could be that when a church refuses the gifts of the Holy Spirit (because of outlandish misuse by some charismatics) the result is a church that digs in deeper to works and rules and regulations even to the point of not caring when women and children are harmed as long as the men are following the rules.

    Both equally out-of-balance in opposite directions.
    On the surface, mortal enemies always at each others’ throats.
    Underneath, Identical in Attitude and Righteousness.

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  311. Deb: When the SBC replaced “Priesthood of the Believer” to “Priesthood of Believers”, this was the result.

    Very clever wording.

    Subtlety in Semantics, My Dear Wormwood.

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  312. FW Rez: Max: Southern Baptists have been too trusting of their national leaders for several years.
    Guilty as charged. There have been several trends in the SBC that have gone unnoticed by a good number of us. Calvinization, Politicalization, Authoritarianization, Fundanmentalization, Falwellinization, “Bibilical ” Counselingization, etc. have been going on for years without much notice.

    Don’t forget Rush Limbaugh-ization and Glenn Beck-ization.

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  313. Max,

    Max, excellently stated. These aggressive Neo-Cals have been salivating over the take-over of the SBC for years. It’s about to happen. We attend a large traditional Baptist Church in Raleigh and I can tell you probably most members have no idea about this upcoming complete take-over. I have asked the senior pastor if he could have a series of meetings explaining Calvinism with a Q&A. Reply: absolutely not. “Keep quiet and keep tithing” seems to be all leaders really want. BTW, I attended a wedding a few years ago where J D Greear was officiating. The mother of the bride was divorced. He, without prior knowledge of the marriage couple, put into the vows that they would never, under any circumstances, get divorced. Many of us were not happy to hear this.

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  314. Finegold: I have asked the senior pastor if he could have a series of meetings explaining Calvinism with a Q&A. Reply: absolutely not. “Keep quiet and keep tithing” seems to be all leaders really want.

    The average Southern Baptist is uninformed, misinformed, or willingly ignorant as the largest non-Calvinist denomination in America is being Calvinized. I lay the fault at the feet of 45,000+ SBC pastors (mostly non-Calvinist) for not having family meetings about this for the past several years. Their congregations (mostly non-Calvinist) have been financing this takeover unaware, while the pastors appear poised to go with the flow as Southern Baptist belief and practice trends toward Calvinism.

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  315. Finegold: I attended a wedding a few years ago where J D Greear was officiating … put into the vows that they would never, under any circumstances, get divorced.

    I don’t think that “worse” in the vows “for better or for worse” includes domestic abuse. Married folks can go through a variety of bad times together, times when it just doesn’t seem like it could get any worse, but love prevails. A man who abuses his wife does not love her.

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  316. Finegold: BTW, I attended a wedding a few years ago where J D Greear was officiating. The mother of the bride was divorced. He, without prior knowledge of the marriage couple, put into the vows that they would never, under any circumstances, get divorced. Many of us were not happy to hear this.

    I wish some pastors could figure out that a wedding is not about *them*.

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  317. Darlene: Wow, what a response to Piper regarding his harmful advice to someone suffering from a poor body image. This professional, educated woman’s response nailed it. But I doubt Piper will take notice because after all, a woman has no right to instruct him.

    Does anybody seriously think that Piper will maintain any lasting traction even amongst his former pew serfs?

    Remember, the internet is the new movable type printing press (Gutenberg), and the available information through it is removing the stranglehold of ecclesiastical tyranny everywhere.

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  318. Lea: I wish some pastors could figure out that a wedding is not about *them*.

    And like the Sabbath, Marriage was made for man, not the other way round’.

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  319. Muff Potter: Remember, the internet is the new movable type printing press (Gutenberg), and the available information through it is removing the stranglehold of ecclesiastical tyranny everywhere.

    Regarding the comparison between Gutenberg’s press and the Internet, I remember this anecdote:

    Gutenberg himself refused to print anything except The Bible and Only The Bible; to him, his invention had no other purpose.

    But the boss had to go home sometime; and when he did, his apprentices stayed on and ran off porn on Gutenberg’s “Bible Only” invention.

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  320. notastepfordsheep

    OK. We’ve said it before and now will again. DO NOT TALK ABOUT MODERATION.
    All you are doing to slowing things down when you do this.

    We moderate comments for a variety of reasons. Many reluctantly but necessary. And we will not say what the rules are as that can make it easier for folks of mal intent to bypass the system.

    As to how long things will stay in moderation. They will stay until we free them. There are 3 of us. We have lives. This blog is not staffed 24/7 with moderation clearing admins. Typically comments will get freed up in an hour or so if during the day/evening east coast US time. If it’s 3am here or we are all busy dealing with elderly parents or on a plane or grocery shopping for a big meal it might take longer.

    Such is life on a no income blog.

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