And Then There Were Two Petitions Against Paige Patterson…

“All Southern Baptist men who share the views represented in the letter are invited to demonstrate that conviction by signing the letter to SWBTS trustees.”

Second Letter to SWBTS Board of Trustees

Hand Holding a Pen

Our previous post – Are There Mixed Motives in the Current Outcries Against Paige Patterson? – has generated quite a bit of discussion. The focus of that post was our reaction to a letter written to the Board of Trustees of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. The letter, which serves as a petition rebuking Paige Patterson’s “unbiblical teaching regarding womanhood, sexuality, and domestic violence” was authored by individuals cloaked in anonymity. Here is a screen shot of a Tweet pointing this out.

Since the signatories are not known, we are left to speculate on their identities. Even if a group of women did put the letter together, we believe that male leaders were somehow involved. After all, these men are complementarians through and through

Dee was spot on in making the following observation —> while the names of those who wrote the letter are concealed, the individuals signing the letter are not only revealing their real names but the church they attend, along with the city where the church is located. That is MOST IRONIC and not well thought out in our opinion (see screen shot below).

https://twitter.com/wartwatch/status/994340927769661440

Here is another Tweet along those lines…

The petition currently has almost 3,000 signatures. Another irony is that several hundred men have signed it, even though the letter begins as follows:

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.

That’s rather odd… Perhaps they didn’t take the time to read the letter.

We couldn’t help but notice that a significant number of signers were from certain churches, specifically:

The Village Church (where Matt Chandler pastors)

The Summit Church (where J.D. Greear pastors)

Sojourn (located in Louisville)

Imago Dei (featured C.J. Mahaney two years ago)

Austin Stone Church (located in Texas)

Capitol Hill Baptist Church (where Mark Dever pastors)

Church at Book Hills (where David Platt used to pastor)

And what do all of these churches (along with some others we spotted) have in common? They fit squarely into the Neo-Cal camp.

Is anyone surprised? We certainly aren’t.

It has become obvious that this was a feeble attempt by the Calvinista crowd to advance their agenda at the upcoming SBC Annual Meeting. Specifically, they want their presidential candidate to be elected. Perhaps they thought J.D. Greear would run unopposed (as Fred Luter did several years ago). After all, Greear graciously stepped aside when the race between him and Steve Gaines was too close to call two years ago.

When Ken Hemphill entered the race, the circumstances changed dramatically. What to do? It’s not that hard to figure out…

Remember, we are no defenders of Paige Patterson. We called for his resignation way back in 2009 when we became aware of the audio of his message at the 2000 Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood (CBMW) gathering. Remember, CBMW is a Calvinista organization, and we understand that it is currently housed on the campus of Southern Seminary. We didn’t point it out at the time, but Patterson was wrapping up his two-year term as president of the Southern Baptist Convention (along with being president of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary) when he delivered that horrible talk.

We will continue to dig into who authored this letter and will keep you informed.


BREAKING NEWS!!!

The men have just published their own letter. It begins as follows: (see screen shot below)

https://swbtsletter-men.com

The body of the men’s letter is almost identical to the prior one. Again, no mention of black eyes and witnesses against Darrell Gilyard.

Your thoughts…


Comments

And Then There Were Two Petitions Against Paige Patterson… — 255 Comments

  1. Why is there one letter for women to sign and a completely separate letter for men to sign? Complementarian? Men and women seated separately in the church?

    The collaboration of men and women is a strong point of Creation, and later, of the work of Christ. How unbiblical for “Christians” not to acknowledge this. Definitely not “Reformed”.

    Hierarchy in the Church? No. Patriarchy is neither Church nor Reformation. That’s what Luther and the Reformation was against, as well as Jesus. There needs to be a new 95 theses, signed by both men and women, and posted.

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  2. I recognized a couple of names on the petition from SBCVoices.
    I doubt if this sudden push against PP has anything to do with what is right and what is wrong. The YRR are just trying to use PP to weaken the traditionalists. Women are nothing more than pawns in the game (not even sure we rank that high).

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  3. I don’t think the goal of either petition is to help women and children. It’s to keep up the complementarian status quo while getting rid of Paige Patterson and replacing him with a Calvinista.

    I think women in the SBC would do well to consider whether voting with their feet and their wallets might be in order.

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  4. The men’s domain was registered the 9th of May, 2018 for a year.

    Same deal as the women’s letter – hidden.

    So men and women sign separate letters?

    Give me a break.

    Will be interesting to see what church participation there is.

    Meanwhile, the woman/women who wrote the first letter remain cloaked, and now the men.

    This has to be political power manipulating/grandstanding.
    This stands to become it’s own circus and distract from what is important.

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  5. GMFS

    ION: Fitba’

    So, the final weekend of Premier League matches is coming up, and nearly everything is decided. Only two things aren’t. The final GiveUsYerMoney Cup spot for next year: If Liverpool avoid defeat at home to Brighton, we’ll qualify for next year regardless of whether we win the final later this month. But if we lose and Chelsea win, they’ll go fourth and push us down into fifth, meaning we’ll have to win the final to qualify next year as holders.

    Similarly, at the bottom of the table, if Swansea win and Southampton lose 8-0 to Manchester City, Swansea will be safe and Southampton will be relegated on goal difference. Southampton will lose to Manchester City, but probably not 8-0.

    IHTIH

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  6. Anyone want to lay odds that any SBTS Trustees will break rank because of these petitions?

    Wanna lay odds any SBC bigwigs are going to sign the men’s petition?

    Anyone want to bet that these petitions will get Paige to leave the stage?

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  7. Worth bringing up this article with Mohler and Patterson quotes surrounding the BFM 2000 given thenpeititon’s focus on it:

    http://www.centerforbaptiststudies.org/hotissues/dildayfm2000.htm

    “In his Founder’s Day address at the seminary, March 30, 2000, Mohler said that Mullin’s emphasis on soul competency has “infected” the SBC with an “autonomous individualism” that undermines Biblical authority to this day. He blames [E.Y.] Mullins for steering the SBC off course by making personal Christian experience more important than Biblical authority. He warned that soul competency “serves as an acid dissolving religious authority, congregationalism, confessionalism, and mutual theological accountability” (Southern Seminary Magazine, June, 2000).”

    “The singular form in BFM63, “priesthood of the believer” had been changed to “priesthood of believers.” Here again, the revisors expressed their mistrust of personal, individual experience, focusing instead on accountability to an approved belief system. This in essence rejects the historical Baptist emphasis of the priesthood of each individual believer (singular), replacing it with a more Reformed doctrine of the priesthood of believers (plural). …. Al Mohler defended the reinterpretation, “It is dangerous to say the priesthood of the believer. It is not just that we stand alone; it is that we stand together – and we stand together under the authority of God’s word.”

    “When Mohler was asked in a Texas meeting in September, 2000 if he were a “five-point Calvinist,” he replied “I will fly my colors boldly. If you ask me if I’m a Calvinist, I’m going to have to answer yes, but that is not the first, second, third or even fourth term I would use.” He said his beliefs are better described as in the Reformed tradition. “Every Christian, every Baptist has to believe in predestination, he said, There’s not a person in this room who doesn’t believe in limited atonement – as opposed to universalism…. The difference is in how it is limited….”

    “In the same meeting, Paige Patterson said he and Mohler hold opposing views on the doctrines of election and predestination and he in fact finds no Biblical basis for the position Mohler embraces. “However,” Patterson said, “Calvinists strongly affirm the authority of the Bible, and that’s a greater point of agreement than the two points of disagreement.. I’d rather have Dr. Mohler hanging around my seminary than someone who had doubts about the Scriptures” (Baptist Standard, Internet news release, November 12, 2000, p. 4).”

    In his conference at Southern Seminary in February, Al Mohler attempted to simplify the divisions in the SBC by saying the two camps are the “truth party” vs. the “liberty party” – the first emphasizes the authority and inerrancy of Scripture while the second emphasizes personal autonomy (Baptist Press, March 22, 2001). His analysis echoes the Calvinist preference for doctrinal propositions and its mistrust of personal Christian experience mentioned above. It also sheds light on Mohler’s strong criticism of E.Y. Mullins’ emphasis on Christian experience. Mohler blames Mullin’s view for contributing to the “present state of theological ‘anemia’ among Southern Baptists.” Mullins “set the stage for doctrinal ambiguity and theological minimalism. He was near the liberals in his approach” (Introduction in The Axioms of Religion – Library of Baptist Classics, Broadman & Hollman, 1997).”

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  8. Another church with a lot of signers is Bayou City Fellowship with 25. This is Beth Moore’s son-in-law’s church, but doesn’t seem to be large nor neoCal (no elders). Incidentally they have service where my parents went to high school.

    Mika Edmondson signed the for men letter but did not add his church.

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  9. Nick Bulbeck: if Swansea win and Southampton lose 8-0 to Manchester City, Swansea will be safe and Southampton will be relegated on goal difference.

    I don’t like the chances of the boys from Abertawe. At least CP Dinas Caerdydd will be promoted to the Premier League, so there will still be a Welsh presence (besides Liverpool) in the top division next year.

    Cymru am byth!

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  10. I am quite impressed that the deebs figured this one out on their own…without the help of men…guess women aren’t so stupid after all, eh??

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  11. Notice that the women’s letter included a disclaimer that the men’s letter didn’t. The women’s letter disclaimer was
    1) lecturing the women to stay in their limited place
    2) making it clear that the women weren’t telling the leaders what to do, but asking them to use their authority to do something
    3) that reminds women that they aren’t allowed to speak up to the leadership after all!

    Does anyone wonder why the church that never listens to women suddenly demands that they speak up? Oh wait, it’s all scripted so once again they still aren’t listening to women. They’re listening to themselves speak! Sheesh!

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  12. I hate how the first sentence in the women’s letter is a strongly worded statement affirming complementarianism. Clearly the most important thing is to make sure women acknowledge their “role,” or else they have no credibility. It makes me sick.

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  13. Has anyone tried calling the phone numbers listed (even if they are google numbers)?

    Also, YRR was coined almost 20 years ago. Aren’t they MARR by now?

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  14. “And what do all of these churches (along with some others we spotted) have in common? They fit squarely into the Neo-Cal camp.”

    My first thought when you said there were a number from these churches is more that the spouses of the lead pastors were involved with the letter itself, so those particular churches were more clued in to what was going on, word of mouth spreading more quickly there, etc. Since we don’t have all the signers names, that I guess isn’t checkable yet.

    This letter hasn’t really been out long and it’s almost all been spread on social media. There are other reasons why others might not sign (I’m not signing because I’m not complementarian or Baptist anymore for instance).

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  15. Quickly perusing the mens letter, as a back in the day southern Baptist, can I say how weird I found it that their list (men, pastors, leaders, elder boards, etc) did not include deacons? My presby church still has deacons, do Baptists not???

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  16. jyjames: Why is there one letter for women to sign and a completely separate letter for men to sign?

    It is pretty weird. If I were still Baptist I would sign either or both, just because. You can’t tell me what to sign! (LOL)

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  17. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar): I doubt if this sudden push against PP has anything to do with what is right and what is wrong. The YRR are just trying to use PP to weaken the traditionalists.

    Truth in a nutshell. The YRR are appearing to take the high road on this matter, while themselves keeping female believers in bondage through the “beauty of complementarity.”

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  18. JDV: Mohler blames Mullin’s view for contributing to the “present state of theological ‘anemia’ among Southern Baptists.” Mullins “set the stage for doctrinal ambiguity and theological minimalism. He was near the liberals in his approach”

    Oh noes! The liberals!!!

    I still don’t get why these guys didn’t just become Presbyterians or create their own reformed Baptist denom. (I mean, money? I guess? But still. When you are so busy trying to rehab the southern Baptist name, to the point where you’ve taken it off all the signs, why not just jettison it??)

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  19. Stan: Another church with a lot of signers is Bayou City Fellowship with 25. This is Beth Moore’s son-in-law’s church, but doesn’t seem to be large nor neoCal (no elders).

    That supports my theory that it’s mostly people who caught wind of this early, and spread it around at their church…

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  20. Lea,

    The push is toward ‘Elder-led’ Southern Baptist congregations. And church members who do not toe the line laid out by the Calvinist church leaders will be subject to ‘church discipline’.

    My Baptist church continues to have deacons, and as a member of that church, I will do everything in my power to keep it that way.

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  21. Avid Reader: Notice that the women’s letter included a disclaimer that the men’s letter didn’t.

    Absolutely.

    I am of the opinion that unless you get rid of this comp/patriarchy nonsense, you will never make progress in the church against DV or abuse.

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  22. Melissa,

    It’s actually a two edged sword because if anyone refuses to sign the petition, the leaders can blame them for supposedly not supporting women’s needs. They’re setting it up so they can say—you’re only allowed to protest the way that we want you to protest!

    This letter felt fishy to me from the beginning because it sounded more like a CBMW sermon than actual women speaking up. Oh wait—the whole point of the letter is protesting a CBMW sermon!

    Makes you wonder how the CBMW could have allowed Paige to teach that kind of wrong in the first place.

    After reading hundreds and hundreds of pages of CMBW stuff, it looked more and more like the whole point of their organization is trying to silence the gifts and callings of God on women’s lives. Who do you think wants to do that? Not God!

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  23. Lea,

    No doubt some non-Calvinist congregations have a problem with Patterson, but I believe the anonymous letter writers fit squarely in the Neo-Cal camp.

    Why are they keeping their identities secret???

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  24. Max: The YRR are appearing to take the high road on this matter, while themselves keeping female believers in bondage through the “beauty of complementarity.”

    – and separate letters. The longer they keep up the infantile gender role game, the more they prolong their maturity of living their faith in mature relationship-building. More to be pitied, with their pitiful stained glass window icons and all, than censured. Childish.

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  25. Deb: The push is toward ‘Elder-led’ Southern Baptist congregations.

    I know, but it still looked very strange.

    As I said, I am Presbyterian. We have Elders and Deacons! For Baptists to have only deacons for so long, it looked SO odd to not see them listed at all. I wonder what the percentage of deacons only, deacons + elders is in Baptist churches now? Do the ‘elder led’s’ not still have deacons??

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  26. For those doing background research, here’s the link to the Baptist Faith and Message 2000:

    http://www.sbc.net/bfm2000/bfm2000.asp

    For the bibliography on this unfolding situation that’s over at Spiritual Sounding Board, this is introductory blurb I wrote, re: the BFM2000, for those who are unfamiliar with that document.

    Issues about complementarianism and the roles of men and women in family and church have surfaced as integral to the situation with comments by Paige Patterson, and how this affects the Southern Baptist Convention. This version of the Baptist Faith and Message is the current standard by which the SBC functions. See especially Article XVIII on The Family at the bottom of the page, and be sure to click on the paper clip link to read the commentary on that article.

    Note who submitted the commentary for Article XVIII:

    Anthony L. Jordan, Chairman
    William R. (Bill) Elliff
    Richard D. Land
    Mary K. Mohler
    Dorothy J. Patterson
    O. Damon Shook
    John G. Sullivan

    DETAILS:

    Anthony L. Jordan
    Executive Director-Treasurer of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma

    William R. (Bill) Elliff
    Pastor of the First Baptist Church, Little Rock, Arkansas

    Richard D. Land
    President of The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention

    Mary K. Mohler
    Homemaker and Director of the Seminary Wives Institute of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

    Dorothy J. Patterson
    Homemaker and adjunct faculty member of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary

    O. Damon Shook
    Pastor of Champion Forest Baptist Church, Houston, Texas

    John G. Sullivan
    Executive Director-Treasurer of the Florida Baptist Convention

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  27. Deb:
    Lea,
    Definitely something we should look into…

    They may have deacons still, but are just trying to downplay their importance? Because they are basically trying to copy Presbyterians (IMO) and for us, deacons are involved in ministries and elders are more making church decisions. (and of course we have loads of committees who make recommendations)

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  28. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar): I doubt if this sudden push against PP has anything to do with what is right and what is wrong. The YRR are just trying to use PP to weaken the traditionalists. Women are nothing more than pawns in the game (not even sure we rank that high).

    I agree with you. I’m cynical enough to say that this is not surprising, but a part of me finds it absolutely heartbreaking.

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  29. Deb,

    You’re welcome, Deb …

    And since I’m posting links, here’s the link to the ongoing bibliography about the situation. Though it started with Paige Patterson, it certainly has mushroomed since just 2+ weeks ago! Interesting to see how it’s ended up in secular press and an increasing number of venues. I’ve been adding about 8-10 new links most days …

    https://spiritualsoundingboard.com/2018/04/30/paige-patterson-on-domestic-violence-audiofile-transcript-and-resource-links/

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  30. Deb: And church members who do not toe the line laid out by the Calvinist church leaders will be subject to ‘church discipline’.

    Any idea what church Dr and Dr Patterson are members of? I’ve searched but cannot find it out. Since Jonathan Leeman is a SWBTS trustee, maybe he could get them “church disciplined” if they don’t attend often enough– and it does seem like they travel a bit.

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  31. Here’s a taste of the sense of entitled power and control SBC leaders have. Excerpts from a Twitter exchange on how SBC leaders punish people for using their voice, instead of maintaining silence:

    :
    a “retired baptist pastor friend of Paige Patterson” pulls my name off this petition to call my pastor to tell him he needed to tell me to remove my name. He did not but @KSPrior thank you for initiating this and I was righteously angry before but now….

    @NicolasGold1
    Replying to @ellieeugenia @KSPrior
    Let me get this straight. An SBC Leader is looking over the list, sees a name listed from a church he knows, & calls the pastor of that church to tell him one of his female parishioners is getting uppity. I wonder how many other SBC pastors are being contacted. Glad he told you.

    This is exactly what happened.

    It’s fair to say I’m not happy. I know this pastor’s name and credentials and he is influential in the SBC. Were talking chairman or former chairman of the executive committee.

    https://twitter.com/ellieeugenia/status/993985526498758659

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  32. CENG1: Interesting that so many of these SBC churches fail to include Baptist in their name.

    That is definitely a New Calvinist thing. They like to appear non-denominational with really cool church names to draw Generation X, Y and Z. You are hard pressed to find any reference to affiliation with the SBC – you ‘may’ find a note on that on the about/beliefs page of their website. Most members of these churches have no idea that they are Southern Baptists; if you told them that as they exited SBC-YRR church plants across the country, they would be amazed! But their young pastors truly enjoy the SBC church planting funds sent their way out of the pockets of hard-working, tithing non-Calvinist Southern Baptists.

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  33. Melissa: I hate how the first sentence in the women’s letter is a strongly worded statement affirming complementarianism.

    They stand by their man. The men tell them what to think and believe.

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  34. Lea: can I say how weird I found it that their list (men, pastors, leaders, elder boards, etc) did not include deacons?

    “Similar conversations regarding these same concerns have been happening among Southern Baptist men, pastors, elder boards, and leadership teams. We are likewise grieved by the comments…”

    I also noticed the “elder board” rather than “deacon board” thing in the man-letter. A hint at the sort of churches that the mystery men who drafted it hail from.

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  35. elastigirl,

    i messed up the formatting — Ellie Eugenia is the speaker, except for nicholas’ comment paraprah.

    many layers of machinations, here.

    looks like SBC leaders simply can’t help themselves when an opportunity to manipulate people presents itself.

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  36. Deb: That’s because their soteriology is far more Presbyterian than Baptist.

    But they won’t align themselves with the Presbyterians because SBC has all the stuff for the taking! Grand seminaries, mission agencies, publishing house, 45,000+ churches ripe for the pickin’.

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  37. I finally read the intro to letter no.1.
    Uhmmm….It’s not written by SBC women. Or if there was any actual females involved, (such as dictation, editing, etc) they appear to have been lead away by male preaching and teaching. I’m describing here, what the KJV refers to as silly women, or the simple (minded) who have been enticed with doctrines.

    He about as probable as a women showing off here second black eye at church. It’s not going to happen.

    Page Patterson, as a conservative SBC pastor, likely does not see the World through a women’s eyes. Probably no more then an autistic person can easily grasp humor, or nuanced social settings.

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  38. Lea:
    Max,

    Presbyterians also have standards and oversite.

    Yes, I think they want to keep the policy of autonomous congregations (when it suits them). It would be harder to slip in changes and pretend that things had always been that way in a denomination with hierarchical structure.

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  39. Lea: I say how weird I found it that their list (men, pastors, leaders, elder boards, etc) did not include deacons? My presby church still has deacons, do Baptists not???

    Until the New Calvinist took over, the average Southern Baptist church had two leadership offices: pastor and deacon. A board of deacons supported the pastor and the congregation in governing the church. The New Calvinists change church polity when they takeover an SBC church, installing a plurality of elders rather than congregational governance typical of Baptist churches. While some elder-ruled churches do have deacons, they are not thought of as men who have any say in church operations. It should be noted that most SBC churches (there are 45,000+) still have the pastor/deacon leadership model, but those will disappear as the new reformers complete Calvinization of the denomination.

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  40. Max: Truth in a nutshell.The YRR are appearing to take the high road on this matter, while themselves keeping female believers in bondage through the “beauty of complementarity.”

    Yeah. I rank them a few notches below People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, because they rank women a little lower than PETA ranks animals. At least I have some respect for what PETA stands for, though they can get a bit extreme.

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  41. Bene D: Wanna lay odds any SBC bigwigs are going to sign the men’s petition?

    Don’t see any there yet. And another unusual thing about SBC bigwigs is that only 1 of them (initials PP) even acknowledged that they had an employee named Frank Page who retired after doing something inappropriate.

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  42. Lea,

    And how would this gender roles / biblical manhood agenda be received in Presbyterian churches? My impression is that it would be a mixed response, much less uniformly tolerated than by the Baptists.

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  43. Caroline: Yes, I think they want to keep the policy of autonomous congregations

    I disagree with you slightly here: They want to keep up a facade of autonomy.

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  44. Lea: Presbyterians also have standards and oversite.

    Certainly! The New Calvinists play by different rules than classical Calvinists. While there may be a common theological thread, the young reformers are more arrogant, militant and aggressive as they attempt to restore the gospel that the rest of Christendom has lost – they alone are keepers of Truth.

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  45. Caroline: It would be harder to slip in changes and pretend that things had always been that way in a denomination with hierarchical structure.

    Right. There is no Baptist ‘book of order’ that I’m aware of, or at least they aren’t being held to it! Not so easy to change everything willy nilly.

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  46. Caroline:
    Lea,

    And how would this gender roles / biblical manhood agenda be received in Presbyterian churches? My impression is that it would be a mixed response, much less uniformly tolerated than by the Baptists.

    Well, it depends on your denomination. PCUSA is egalitarian, PCA is complementarian…

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  47. Lea: Absolutely.

    I am of the opinion that unless you get rid of this comp/patriarchy nonsense, you will never make progress in the church against DV or abuse.

    I agree.

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  48. Max: Until the New Calvinist took over, the average Southern Baptist church had two leadership offices: pastor and deacon. A board of deacons supported the pastor and the congregation in governing the church. The New Calvinists change church polity when they takeover an SBC church, installing a plurality of elders rather than congregational governance typical of Baptist churches.

    Yes, these letter drafters stress how they “hold to” the BFM2000’s article on manhood/womanhood.
    But their ‘elder boards’ are a departure from BFM2000 ecclesiology:

    “VI. The Church…Each congregation operates under the Lordship of Christ through democratic processes. In such a congregation each member is responsible and accountable to Christ as Lord. Its scriptural officers are pastors and deacons.”

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  49. Are the letter writers unaware that there are several women trustees on the SWBTS board?

    http://www.sbc.net/pdf/trustees/2017SouthWestern.pdf

    Yet in both letters the trustees are addressed as “brothers”:

    [emphasis added]

    “Dear Pastor Ueckert and Board of Trustees, 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. We urge you to exercise the authority you have been given by the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention…The world is watching us all, BROTHERS….We are praying for you to have wisdom, discernment, and courage.”

    “Dear Pastor Ueckert and Board of Trustees, We are concerned Southern Baptist men 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…urging you to exercise the authority you have been given by the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention…The world is watching, BROTHERS. We pray the Lord will grant you faith, courage, and wisdom to act”

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  50. Nathan Priddis: Page Patterson, as a conservative SBC pastor, likely does not see the World through a women’s eyes.

    Folks like Dr. Patterson give other conservatives a black eye on this issue. Not all who consider themselves conservative in belief and practice subordinate female believers.

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  51. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar): I disagree with you slightly here: They want to keep up a facade of autonomy.

    I think that they use autonomy selectively, when it suits them. It does make it easier to do things like let the megachurch in the wealthy suburb pretend it isn’t SBC, or act like there’s nothing that the SBC as a whole can do about it if some individual pastors are doing something shady. But if you wanted to have a female pastor or criticize the TGC-approved Sunday school literature, I’m sure you couldn’t have THAT kind of autonomy.

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  52. Jerome: Yes, these letter drafters stress how they “hold to” the BFM2000’s article on manhood/womanhood.
    But their ‘elder boards’ are a departure from BFM2000 ecclesiology:

    “VI. The Church…Each congregation operates under the Lordship of Christ through democratic processes. In such a congregation each member is responsible and accountable to Christ as Lord. Its scriptural officers are pastors and deacons.”

    AH. Very interesting.

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  53. Jerome: Are the letter writers unaware that there are several women trustees on the SWBTS board?

    http://www.sbc.net/pdf/trustees/2017SouthWestern.pdf

    Yet in both letters the trustees are addressed as “brothers”:

    I often tell my dear wife that she is one of the most godly men I know. 🙂

    In reality, I suppose we are complementarian sort of. My wife’s spiritual gifts complement mine and we work together as co-ambassadors for Christ – working as one to fulfill the Great Commission as we are led by the Spirit.

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  54. Max: The New Calvinists play by different rules than classical Calvinists. While there may be a common theological thread, the young reformers are more arrogant, militant and aggressive as they attempt to restore the gospel that the rest of Christendom has lost – they alone are keepers of Truth.

    That may be the case not, or not, I really don’t know. But the Calvinists historically have not exactly written the book on sweetness, understanding of other points of view or religious liberty and sharing political power and influence, and it was not Calvinists who championed live and let live as an idea.

    Just look at the history of Calvinism in the English speaking world. True, a somewhat mixed bag, but also true that they gave the Catholics a run for their money when it came to enforcement and politics.

    Do not discount anybody’s theology as both a motivator and also an excuse. The same ‘nice’ calvinist also believes that some are hopelessly predestined for damnation for the glory of God. Is everybody who sits on a calvinist pew ‘that kind’ of calvinist? Probably not. Nevertheless, people do not get a niceness pass for their theology. The theology stands or falls on its own, and lurks to rear and roar at some appropriate time and place.

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  55. okrapod: people do not get a niceness pass for their theology. The theology stands or falls on its own, and lurks to rear and roar at some appropriate time and place

    Agreed. Anyone who misrepresents the very character of God (love for ALL people) – whether they are “nice” or not about it – err in their belief and practice. Many old guard (“nice” Calvinists) in SBC may not agree with the bad-boy methods of their neo-brethren, but they put up with it as long as Calvinization of the denomination is achieved. At the end of the day, as together they strip the “Whosoever will may come” gospel from SBC life, none of them come across as nice.

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  56. Another thing. Who defines what is ‘conservative’ and what is ‘liberal’ and on what criteria. Where is it defined in scripture as to what is ‘conservative’ and where does scripture say that ‘conservative’ is next to godliness, especially in the light of the ‘liberal’ ideas of Paul regarding the Gentiles most of which ideas were upheld by the Jerusalem church leadership. So, Paul’s ideas were ‘liberal’ but submission of the issues to the Jerusalem church was ‘conservative’ so where did that leave Paul.

    The conservative vs liberal dichotomy no longer works in religion due to lack of consistency of definitions, complexity of the various issues, and lack of biblical authentication of the idea itself. It is a manipulative move on the part of persons who want to discredit and control other persons for their own selfish reasons.

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  57. CENG1:
    Interesting that so many of these SBC churches fail to include Baptist in their name.

    Don’t give away the con until the Marks are in too deep to back out.

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  58. okrapod: Another thing. Who defines what is ‘conservative’ and what is ‘liberal’ and on what criteria.

    Whoever’s in POWER, of course.
    War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength.

    “Before that can happen, make sure WE are the ones who define what is legal and what is not.”
    — L Ron Hubbard, Founder, Flag, and Bridge of Scientology

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  59. jyjames: From Caesar to Nero, then came the collapse.

    Caesar Augustus,
    Caesar Tiberias,
    Caesar Caligula,
    Caesar Claudius,
    Caesar Nero,
    then came the Year of Four Caesars, ended only by Caesar Vespasian’s military coup.

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  60. Max,

    It breaks my heart because I remember ‘when’. I remember ‘whosoever will’ as preached before the idea was rendered impotent with theological conjecture as to why some do and some don’t. IMO the very satan himself uses theology to try to subvert the mission of the message of Christ. Well, of course, he tried that in the desert with the temptation of Christ himself. And there they were with -it is written- vs it is also written. There is nothing new under the sun.

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  61. okrapod: Just look at the history of Calvinism in the English speaking world.

    Is there a religious group that doesn’t have a pretty shady history if you go back far enough? I can’t think of one.

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  62. Max: Folks like Dr. Patterson give other conservatives a black eye on this issue.Not all who consider themselves conservative in belief and practice subordinate female believers.

    I understand your point. I am choosing the label Conservative, because the architects of the Conservative Resurgence so named themselves.

    The Resurgence as I often remark, was a counterstrike in the ongoing Fundamentalist War. It is a war, and women are another target.

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  63. Nathan Priddis: The Resurgence as I often remark, was a counterstrike in the ongoing Fundamentalist War. It is a war, and women are another target.

    Southern Baptists are slowly waking up to the fact that the Conservative Resurgence has become a Calvinist Resurgence. The inerrancy battle was a cover for the New Calvinists to eventually gain control of the denomination. Southern Baptists across the country joined in the battle cry to defend the Word, not knowing that there were folks in the shadows getting ready to reinterpret truth for them.

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  64. Man this girl at SBC Today has been drinking the koolaid…

    has clarified comments taken out of context, explained that he has never counseled a physically abused woman to remain in a dangerous situation, and in fact has so fought for abused women that he has hidden them from dangerous husbands to protect them.

    Any conclusions other than that are simply those of people not willing to give an honest reading and consideration of his statements and heart.

    Oh honey. Catch a clue.

    http://sbctoday.wpengine.com/beth-moore-paige-patterson-and-the-bible/

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  65. Lea,

    It depends on how nuanced and detailed you want to be about history. There’s a part of me that wants to take up for The Underdogs here. Of course they weren’t perfect and they were all trying to work out their theology in very difficult circumstances of a state Church. Some like the Munster anabaptists were horrible. Others spent their lives on the run and we’re pacifists. From Anabaptists (not monolithic) to Huguenot many suffered from great persecution from torture, imprisonment, banishment, drowning and even burning. I am grateful for any of their writings that were perserved. A chilling fact was learning about how a lot of the information (letters, gov meetings, etc) about these people was archived by the state churches and not readibly available to American Scholars until after World War I and World War II.

    Martyrs Mirror tried to list as many as possible from all sides and weighs about 25 lb.

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  66. Caroline:
    Lea,

    And how would this gender roles / biblical manhood agenda be received in Presbyterian churches? My impression is that it would be a mixed response, much less uniformly tolerated than by the Baptists.

    Depends on the branch of Presbyterian Church. PC-USA, less likely, I imagine (don’t know for sure). PCA and OPC, from my experience, shade from whole-hog comp all the way to patriarchy.

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  67. Lea: Is there a religious group that doesn’t have a pretty shady history if you go back far enough? I can’t think of one.

    Is there ANYONE — individual or organization — who doesn’t?

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  68. Lydia: There’s a part of me that wants to take up for The Underdogs here

    I think only the smallest, pacifist sects really never caused damage. I admit, I heard a podcast on the munster Anabaptists and that sticks in my head (and I might weary of hearing another ‘how bad was calvin’ rant. I would rather ask how many weren’t??). But yes, they were getting it from all sides too. But then, you had Church of England, verses Catholics. Catholics vs protestants. Protestants v. Protestants. Church history is a mess.

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  69. Jerome:
    Are the letter writers unaware that there are several women trustees on the SWBTS board?

    http://www.sbc.net/pdf/trustees/2017SouthWestern.pdf

    Yet in both letters the trustees are addressed as “brothers”:

    [emphasis added]

    “Dear Pastor Ueckert and Board of Trustees, 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. We urge you to exercise the authority you have been given by the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention…The world is watching us all, BROTHERS….We are praying for you to have wisdom, discernment, and courage.”

    “Dear Pastor Ueckert and Board of Trustees, We are concerned Southern Baptist men 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…urging you to exercise the authority you have been given by the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention…The world is watching, BROTHERS. We pray the Lord will grant you faith, courage, and wisdom to act”

    Also, they strongly appear to have been penned by the same hand.

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  70. refugee: GMTA

    lol. I’m not so familiar with OPC, but yeah. It should be noted for all the talk of hierarchys and authority, PCA took their ball and went home when they disagreed. Which is what everyone does, it seems. So. Authority only matters when you agree with me!

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  71. okrapod: Do not discount anybody’s theology as both a motivator and also an excuse. The same ‘nice’ calvinist also believes that some are hopelessly predestined for damnation for the glory of God. Is everybody who sits on a calvinist pew ‘that kind’ of calvinist

    Sounds like ‘nice’ Calvinists are better people than their Theology.
    Decency always seems to shine through Ideology.

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  72. Headless Unicorn Guy: Sounds like ‘nice’ Calvinists are better people than their Theology.
    Decency always seems to shine through Ideology.

    I think it’s the reverse too. Evil comes through and uses even the best theology.

    My experience with Calvinists has been incredibly positive, so I’m obviously biased on this. My church is also full of ex Baptists and they retained quite a bit of their free will ideas. Church members are generally not nearly as lockstep with a bunch of positions points as people like to think.

    What matters is that you are in a church that accepts you, regardless of not falling in lockstep.

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  73. Max: Southern Baptists are slowly waking up to the fact that the Conservative Resurgence has become a Calvinist Resurgence.The inerrancy battle was a cover for the New Calvinists to eventually gain control of the denomination.Southern Baptists across the country joined in the battle cry to defend the Word, not knowing that there were folks in the shadows getting ready to reinterpret truth for them.

    I’m not feeling optimistic. If SBC is waking up as you say,I think it’s to little to late.
    Besides 1800’s Fundamentalism, they will need to address it’s turn of the century alliance with Kuyper’s Neo Calvinism. If the sheep can’t identify pastors failing to protect women is sub-optimal, how will they see Seven Spheres, as fascist ideology? It is the embodyment of the Latin fasces, to bundle all of society in a unified purpose.

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  74. Also in the second letter:
    “We also wish to note that we are not speaking to validate our sisters’ voices. A woman’s voice does not need the affirmation of a man to be valid. They speak on their own with the authority and dignity of believers in Christ, created in the image of God.”
    These guys are off the Complementarian reservation.

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  75. Lea,

    But there were real victims who did not side with either of the state churches. One of the things that really bothers me about Calvinists inspired history is that it seeks to marginalize these people. It’s one reason why I have so much respect for Leonard Verduin. As a Dutch Reformed theologian and scholar at UofM who went to Europe after the war to dive into the archives, he realized how much the victors had written the history and he sought to correct it to the best of his ability.

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  76. refugee,

    Lea,

    Thanks for your responses. So, it’s complicated!

    It’s good to be reminded that none of these groups are monolithic. It’s interesting where the divisions arise that lead to separation of a new denomination. I wonder if this could happen in the SBC.

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  77. Melissa: I hate how the first sentence in the women’s letter is a strongly worded statement affirming complementarianism. Clearly the most important thing is to make sure women acknowledge their “role,” or else they have no credibility. It makes me sick.

    A covenant by any other name…

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  78. Lea,

    I don’t know why his defenders keep making that silly argument. Considering I’ve heard Paige Patterson tell that story publicly, in person, with my own ears, means that even if he didn’t counsel a single woman to do exactly that, he was counseling hundreds more to do so with that sermon.

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  79. Melissa:
    I hate how the first sentence in the women’s letter is a strongly worded statement affirming complementarianism. Clearly the most important thing is to make sure women acknowledge their “role,” or else they have no credibility. It makes me sick.

    For a Calvinista takeover, that’s the “Gospel”, so the only important thing for them. Jesus is only an afterthought…

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  80. Lydia: Lea,
    But there were real victims who did not side with either of the state churches.

    The only thing Luther, Calvin, and the Pope could agree on was a Final Solution to the Anabaptist Problem.
    (phrasing deliberate)

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  81. ishy: For a Calvinista takeover, that’s the “Gospel”, so the only important thing for them. Jesus is only an afterthought…

    An afterthought who bends the knee and burns the pinch of incense to CALVIN’s Perfectly-Parsed Theology.

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  82. ishy: Lea,
    I don’t know why his defenders keep making that silly argument.

    “A Lie, repeated often enough, becomes Truth.”
    — Reichsminister Josef Goebbels

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  83. Nathan Priddis: It is the embodyment of the Latin fasces, to bundle all of society in a unified purpose.

    The Roman symbol of the Roman State —
    Axe for beheading, bound with rods for beating.

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  84. Lea: My experience with Calvinists has been incredibly positive, so I’m obviously biased on this.

    Considering the Calvinists who make the news here at TWW, you may have lucked out.

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  85. Lydia: But there were real victims who did not side with either of the state churches. One of the things that really bothers me about Calvinists inspired history is that it seeks to marginalize these people.

    There were all sorts of real victims on all sides. Totally agree.

    History is interesting, and bloody, and I don’t shy away from any of it.

    How it applies to today is a different question, though. We don’t have a state sponsored church, we have a bunch of denominations of all types. I think much of our church issues today of the types we mostly discuss here have to do with a specific reaction to cultural changes in the 60s, with womens rights and in some cases the rights of racial minorities.

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  86. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes: I think women in the SBC would do well to consider whether voting with their feet and their wallets might be in order.

    If they can overcome their fear, fear that they’re going against what the Almighty ‘teaches’ in his word, this just might happen.

    As it is, they’ve had this nonsense (cast in concrete roles based on plumbing received at birth) drummed into and beat into their skulls for so long, changing attitudes will not happen over night.

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  87. Lea: How it applies to today is a different question, though.

    I was thinking how hard it is to apply any lessons from history if we don’t really know the multifaceted aspects to it, at least in some general way. It’s like never reading Madison’s notes from the Constitutional Convention. Or never reading The Federalist Papers. That sort of thing.

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  88. Lea: I don’t think the particular issues are really about Calvinism, so I would say it isn’t luck.

    I don’t think they are really Calvinists, they just claim to be. It’s more of a Judaic sect than anything resembling Christianity.

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  89. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes:
    I don’t think the goal of either petition is to help women and children. It’s to keep up the complementarian status quo while getting rid of Paige Patterson and replacing him with a Calvinista.

    I think women in the SBC would do well to consider whether voting with their feet and their wallets might be in order.

    Exactly! Because if they get their way and oust Patterson, the new boss will be the same – if not WORSE – than the old boss. And wise will still be told to stay with their abusive husbands.

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  90. And Then There Were Two Petitions Against Paige Patterson…

    Why am I reminded of the Agatha Christie novel And Then There Were None?

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  91. Darlene: Because if they get their way and oust Patterson, the new boss will be the same – if not WORSE – than the old boss. And wise will still be told to stay with their abusive husbands.

    Well, it kind of depends on which ‘wing’ gets power. There seem to be a couple shaking out…

    And wise wives will ignore said ‘advice’!

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  92. Muff Potter: Muslin, fka Dee Holmes: I think women in the SBC would do well to consider whether voting with their feet and their wallets might be in order.

    If they can overcome their fear, fear that they’re going against what the Almighty ‘teaches’ in his word, this just might happen.

    Eternal Hell is quite a motivator to stay in line.

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  93. Lea: Well, it kind of depends on which ‘wing’ gets power. There seem to be a couple shaking out…

    Remember Germany’s 1932 elections?

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  94. Melissa:
    I hate how the first sentence in the women’s letter is a strongly worded statement affirming complementarianism. Clearly the most important thing is to make sure women acknowledge their “role,” or else they have no credibility. It makes me sick.

    A more accurate term would be that women must be reminded to stay in their place. I wouldn’t be surprised if they asked permission from the men in charge if they could write this letter. It seems they are blind to the fact that they are being used to push an agenda, an agenda that will not work in their favor. And women will still be told to stay with their abusive husbands no matter the outcome of this political brouhaha.

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  95. Darlene: A more accurate term would be that women must be reminded to stay in their place.

    I think part of it is ‘promise you we’re the ‘good’ sort of Baptist women, not mean feminist egalitarians. You can listen to us!’.

    Sad that they felt that was needed. And maddening. And the reason I am not a SB anymore.

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  96. Lea:

    I still don’t get why these guys didn’t just become Presbyterians or create their own reformed Baptist denom. (I mean, money? I guess?)

    You guess right. Why start from nothing when they can take over a denom with millions of dollars of assets and 40,000 churches predisposed to give them more? The strange thing to me is they really think they’re doing the right thing.

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  97. If they don’t sort out a) what to do with PP, and b) a woman’s “place” which is causing them kitten fits, I predict all-out nuclear war at the Southen Baptist convention this summer. They’ll make the front page again.

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  98. It’s ironic that the very people who shout “unity” when they don’t get their way and label those who don’t agree with them as “divisive” are creating the most division I have seen in 50 years.

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  99. Lea: I know, but it still looked very strange.

    As I said, I am Presbyterian. We have Elders and Deacons! For Baptists to have only deacons for so long, it looked SO odd to not see them listed at all. I wonder what the percentage of deacons only, deacons + elders is in Baptist churches now? Do the ‘elder led’s’ not still have deacons??

    What is the difference between elders and deacons in a Baptist Church? And why wouldn’t New Calvinist churches want deacons? What’s wrong with having deacons and elders? This inquiring mind wants to know.

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  100. Darlene,

    When I was Baptist we didn’t have elders, just deacons. They were a bit like elders in my church, except they were all men. But Baptists tended to have members meetings where they voted on most stuff.

    I think they want to go to elder boards because they want the elders deciding everything, or most things, not clear on this type of Baptist polity because it’s not traditional to my experience. Presbys have elders who make decisions on a lot of stuff, other things they make recommendations and put it forward to the congregation for a vote. So a bit of split.

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  101. Headless Unicorn Guy: “Good Little Party Member” or “Good Little Commander’s Handmaid”?
    Or, to use older terminology, “Useful Idiot”.

    Hi, long time lurker, cradle SBC who go the heck out of Dodge several years ago and joined another denomination.

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  102. On the origins of the Conservative Resurgence, my fixation on omens surfaced again. I couldn’t help but Google the New Orleans coffee shop. I got “Coffee of the World”.

    Why was I not surprised? The whole CR was of the World. It’s why the proponents love it so, and will never denounce it. They are of this World, and love the commandments of men.

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  103. refugee,

    The PCA alone is rather diverse. Smaller denominations like the OPC and the RPCNA are rather patriarchal. Not necessarily like the old Vision Forum crowd, but getting uncomfortably close. The OPC in Colorado is apparently still saddled with Kevin Swanson.

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  104. Caroline:
    Lea,

    And how would this gender roles / biblical manhood agenda be received in Presbyterian churches? My impression is that it would be a mixed response, much less uniformly tolerated than by the Baptists.

    It depends which wing of the Presbyterian Church you are speaking of. The OPC and PCA would most definitely affirm complementarianism, i.e. gender roles. The PCUSA would not.

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  105. Headless Unicorn Guy: “Good Little Party Member” or “Good Little Commander’s Handmaid”?

    drstevej: I miss the “We’re not an organized religion, we’re baptists” days.

    Baptists were always organized. They just said that to differentiate themselves from the Roman Catholics.

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  106. Lea: Café Du Monde is famous. They have amazing beignets! Don’t knock em.

    The coffee is chicory.

    Their beignets are greasy and sweet, but great! Their chicory coffee is paint stripper.

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  107. drstevej,

    The way I heard it was ‘we are not a denomination’ while differentiating between a denom and a convention of autonomous co-operating churches. And also ‘no Baptist can tell another Baptist what to believe’. Those ideas seem to have been given up without even a real contest.

    There was some truth in the old stuff. I was a Baptist and sure enough no Baptist controlled what I believed. If I were one who wanted control of Baptistville that idea would be the first one I tried to destroy.

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  108. Darlene,

    Im my church (which does have elders/deacons, and I grew up in a Presbyterian church with the same governing structure):
    Elders: Were responsible for the spiritual health of the flock, as well as major governing decisions.
    Deacons: for the health and welfare of the flock

    My current evangelical church has elders and deacons, but we also have a church board that works in an advisory capacity, especially business/employment issues. Nothing can be approved unless the congregation approves it by a 2/3 majority (except for legal issues mandated by the state-then we are thoroughly informed regarding why something is happening).

    Southern Baptists are infamous for congregational rule to the point where one faction can get enough votes to oust the pastor in one business meeting, regardless of what the deacons might have to say. It might be one reason for the tendency towards elders.. My church elders are a) elected (we even have term-limits), and b) do not act as demigods.

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  109. When I was a Baptist in my youth the deacons functioned as a governing board of sorts, and nothing was brought to a vote unless it first went through the deacon board. (Dad was a deacon as were two other adult male family members.) However, there was talk that there were other centers of power also. The ‘choir’ was said to wield much power; and sometimes the term ‘runs the church’ was used. It was said that some preacher might be afraid to stand up to ‘the choir’. The WMU did its own thing, but definitely had a voice of sorts in missions. I never heard it said however that anybody told the preacher what to preach; complain perhaps but control no regarding sermon content. But goodness help the preacher that got crosswise of the deacons and the choir and the WMU.

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  110. Steve:
    Nancy2 (aka Kevlar),

    Doesn’t matter. Think elder rule. Five guys outnumber 500 men, women, and children. EVERY day.

    I know, been in baptist churches all my life. Might make a difference if these women had the courage to walk out, withdraw membership.

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  111. Headless Unicorn Guy,

    Muff Potter: Muslin, fka Dee Holmes: I think women in the SBC would do well to consider whether voting with their feet and their wallets might be in order.

    If they can overcome their fear, fear that they’re going against what the Almighty ‘teaches’ in his word, this just might happen.

    Headless: “Eternal Hell is quite a motivator to stay in line.”
    +++++++++++++++++++++

    i think it can be just… phantom fear.

    because of the scare tactics they’ve heard for so long. facial expressions and tone of voice that convey “oh there is so serious… there so much to be concerned about and fearful of”….

    but the words are so vague, it’s not every clear what it is that we are supposed to be afraid of. other than you’d better adopt these gender roles, or else!

    ..or else the sky will fall!

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  112. elastigirl,

    stupid spell check, substituting words without my permission! (entitled trumped up little machine, here)

    christians can have a fear reflex. “OH NO!!!”

    but, i’m not sure christians even know what exactly they’re afraid of. they aren’t in the habit of articulating it (because they rarely hear it articulated — just severe looks and tones in saying convoluted nothing).

    if christians would take the time to try to articulate what they are afraid of, they would hear themselves say something very unreasonable.

    something to which they would probably reply, “…that’s it? well… so what?”

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  113. Lea: Café Du Monde is famous. They have amazing beignets! Don’t knock em.

    The coffee is chicory.

    Chicory? As in Chicory? That was an old coffee substitute when the British blockaded the colonies. My omen fixation is stumped on that one.
    I survived an autoimmune. It left me with a complicated relationship with baked goods containing gluten. Sad to say, my unfulfilled gluten lust, is likely simular to complementariansism lust for womens possession and subordination. Yes,I do feel deep seated bakery hatred.

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  114. Carlstadt and Brunfels, two of the first Anabaptist leaders, spoke about the “priesthood of all believers in the 1520s. Carlstadt and Luther fell out over it and other things. The phrase or idea was Luther’s I think.

    Then this.
    “Magisterial Protestantism was concerned with the Reformation of Christendom along civic, territorial and national lines – to be sure, as a second-best to the unitive reformation of the whole of Christendom in head and members. Magisterial Protestantism acknowledged, so to speak, the prophetic function of criticism of the medieval Church but it found no place formally in its theories of polity and the ministry, whether Lutheran, Reformed, or Anglican, for the prophet free standing as critic of society(“forthteller”) and no place whatsoever for the apostle. In contrast, many proponents of the Radical Reformation, in a sectarian identification of the whole of territorial Christendom -Protestant scarcely less than Catholic -as anti-Christian or sub-Christian, turned with vehemence to the pentecostal task of converting Christendom and the world to Christianity as they variously understood the Gospel. Even the Munsterites, for all their ferocity, in espousing and adopting the Hofmannite version of election combined it with an ‘ecumenical’ view of a world mission symbolised by King John’s global orb. In the first generation every believer was a prophet or prophetess, or even an apostle, or at least a responsible disciple of Christ, ready to propagate the faith by his or her martyrdom.”
    (The Radical Reformation, pp1276-1277j

    A couple of things struck me about this. First the first (ana)Baptists spoke of the priesthood of all believers, not the priesthood of the believer so, to me the phrases mean the same thing. Applying the this to Mr Mohler’s manoeuvres, the argument is about the setting in which this priesthood is exercised. He saw it as best expressed within the church as opposed to a myriad of individual voices saying (probably) different things. A look at anabaptist history suggests that he was right to be worried about the ensuing chaos of views. (Think of Anne Hutchinson and the Massachusetts Bay Colony, for example, or Luther’s “Letter on Infiltrating and Clandestine Preachers, works vol. 40).
    I think Max said somewhere in the previous post that Baptists we’re not about all that concerned about theology, they were more interested in their potluck dinners. And that was the other thing that struck me. If Reformed believers account for less than 10% of all believers, it would seem more appropriate to look for the cause of the current malaise within the SBC in the other 90%. It would make for a good talking point at one of their potluck dinners – if they were interested in theology.

    I say this as a one-time Baptist deacon, youth leader, lay preacher and superintendent (a quaint English word for the unpaid pastor of a rural Baptist Mission Church).

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  115. elastigirl,

    My old IFCA church was so scary to me as a teen. Some things would be okay, and then all of a sudden banned because they gave the “appearance of evil.” Games like UNO would suddenly entice people to gamble and lose all their hard-earned money. I was a nervous-wreck, always second-guessing my behavior. Thankfully, college brought into balance. We did all kinds of fun things at that church, and learned a much more balanced way of holy living.

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  116. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar),

    Thanks Nancy2 … glad it’s of help. Sorry for the headache!

    As a point of interest, typically I at least skim the entire article, more often read them in full. It’s my way of absorbing what details I can so I can watch for patterns, such as when it jumps from survivor bloggers to secular media to Christian media and in what order, or when certain theological issues get brought in, or what range of responses are coming in on particular issues.

    Never know when something from that sort of context will become an important link for unraveling misconceptions, or pinpointing when a sly lie got inserted into the conversation, that kind of thing.

    Plus it becomes a useful reference source for later to have so many links in one place.

    So, if I’m not writing something up as a formal case study, it gives others a chance to do so, or to pick up the evidence threads if a systemic issue or abusive celebrity reemerges …

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  117. brad/futuristguy,

    I read as much as I can find. But the way you gather info, put events in order, compare/contrast ……. Just lay it all out there for us!!! ……. I, for one, am glad you do what you do.

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  118. elastigirl: i think it can be just… phantom fear.

    Yep. Once you realize they can’t do anything to you salvation wise, you only have to realize they are basically bullies. Call them on it and leave. You do have to deal with the relationship piece of it, which may be rough.

    However, your real friends should stick with you when you leave a church. If they don’t that is a hard thing, but telling in its own way. Enough people take a stand and things will surely change.

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  119. Nathan Priddis: Chicory? As in Chicory? That was an old coffee substitute when the British blockaded the colonies.

    Per Café Du Monde’s website: ‘The taste for coffee and chicory was developed by the French during their civil war. Coffee was scarce during those times, and they found that chicory added body and flavor to the brew.’

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  120. Linn: Games like UNO would suddenly entice people to gamble and lose all their hard-earned money.

    You played UNO for money??

    Linn: My old IFCA church was so scary to me as a teen. Some things would be okay, and then all of a sudden banned because they gave the “appearance of evil.”

    Had a friend who quit her church when the pastor up and banned something that had previously been fine and she was like ‘what’?

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  121. Lea: Coffee was scarce during those times, and they found that chicory added body and flavor to the brew.

    Hmm… but dead body, and boggin flavour.

    I suppose it’s very easy for me to laugh, mind, when I’ve never lived through wartime.

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  122. Darlene: What is the difference between elders and deacons in a Baptist Church? And why wouldn’t New Calvinist churches want deacons?What’s wrong with having deacons and elders? This inquiring mind wants to know.

    The New Calvinist concept of elders comes more out of the shepherding and cult movements than Presbyterian churches. New Calvinist elders hold absolute authority, usually written into the church covenant that all members are required to sign. In some churches all leaders are elders, and in some others, there are both elders and pastors and the elder board answers to the head pastor. Often the latter is stacked with yes-men who do the lead pastors absolute will.

    The covenants are often a long list of things members are required to do with very little stipulations on what is required from pastors or elders. In many of these covenants, members cannot make any major decision without elder consent, including marrying, divorcing, moving, taking new jobs, changing churches, or choosing a new church. Most of these covenants do not allow members to remove an elder or pastor by any means–only other elders can do so.

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  123. ishy: In many of these covenants, members cannot make any major decision without elder consent, including marrying, divorcing, moving, taking new jobs, changing churches, or choosing a new church.

    And just to go back to the point about phantom fear…they cannot really stop you from doing a single one of these things! They can only harass you about it and try to make you feel guilty enough to do what they say.

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  124. ishy: Most of these covenants do not allow members to remove an elder or pastor by any means–only other elders can do so.

    Which is insane, and why term limits seem like an incredibly healthy idea to me.

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  125. ishy:

    The New Calvinist concept of elders comes more out of the shepherding and cult movements than Presbyterian churches.

    I know what you mean, but I beg to differ slightly. Their idea of “elders” also borrows heavily from the concepts of the “self-made man” with his owner-run business, and of the popular guru-author.

    Though actually, I suppose most cultists and self-appointed “shepherds” modelled themselves on those things too. So no, I take it back – you’re right.

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  126. Lea: Which is insane, and why term limits seem like an incredibly healthy idea to me.

    Just having a way for members to remove pastors and elders alone would make a world of difference. But the bottom line is that it’s all about a few men gaining and keeping power.

    I do know one church that had bought it all hook, line, and sinker and has since recanted. They dropped out of Acts 29 and put in an amendment to their covenant that says that an elder can be removed by 10 members in agreement. But that’s the only one I’ve heard of doing that so far.

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  127. Nick Bulbeck:
    Though actually, I suppose most cultists and self-appointed “shepherds” modelled themselves on those things too. So no, I take it back – you’re right.

    I think there’s always been cults and power-hungry men, but I do think the shepherding movement did take the big business strategies of the 80s to the church.

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  128. ishy,

    ““I wish to apologize to every woman who has been wounded by anything I have said that was inappropriate or that lacked clarity,” said Patterson”

    Weasel words!!

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  129. Nick Bulbeck: I suppose it’s very easy for me to laugh, mind, when I’ve never lived through wartime.

    You have missed something in the way of food. I was born in 34 during the depression and I was entering middle school when WWII was over. So my developing brain was habituated to poor man’s food as available what with rationing and all. And I raised and sold chickens while in elementary school-meat rationing created the opportunity. Not to forget that southern cooking is itself poor man’s cooking. Barbecue began with poor southerners and then spread west, for example. Pigs were cheap and available.

    All of this is to say that there is a comfort and good nutrition in simple dishes of locally grown food. There is also a delicacy of unmodified food stuffs which I find very satisfying. Poor folks often pick the food right out of the garden plot, and food never gets better than eaten right then before the plant’s enzymes degrade(!) the taste.

    How to cook like a poor man? Throw it in the pot, add water, throw in a chunk or whatever meat is available, and simmer until you are sure it is good and dead (sic). Add whatever and how much ever is available at that point and simmer some more. Thicken the juice if you want to, and eat. Or else just pan fry it. Eat with real cornbread, or else just crumble the cold leftover cornbread in a bowl at breakfast and pour milk over it and eat it-with thanks to God for provision.

    Some people I know watch some UK baking show during their lunch time-in their office with the door closed and the lights out. Literally. It is good entertainment because it is sooo different from how we do. Some guy puts whiskey in everything. That is not poor man’s cooking.

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  130. Lea,

    I particularly liked the part where he said he was truly humbled and is requesting that his name be taken off the Patterson Center for Global Theological Innovation and the window with his image removed from the chapel.

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  131. What PP did not back away from in his apology is his harmful theological stance that divorce is never an option, even in cases of abuse. If offered 2 weeks ago, I might have given him an incomplete with an opportunity to fix it. The assignment is now, however, well overdue and final grades have been turned in in the court of public opinion.

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  132. Nick Bulbeck: Their idea of “elders” also borrows heavily from the concepts of the “self-made man” with his owner-run business

    New Calvinist elders at SBC-YRR church plants near me are hand-picked by the pastor, yes-men buddies who have been following him around. There is just something not right about a 30-year old “lead” pastor and his band of 30-year old “elders.” Good Lord, the youth group is running the church!

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  133. Jerome:
    .We are praying for you to have wisdom, discernment, and courage.”

    “We pray the Lord will grant you faith, courage, and wisdom to act”

    It stood out to me that the men are to have wisdom to ACT, the women are to just have wisdom, etc. Just stay in your place, little woman, let the men do the acting. Scary thought.
    Regarding elders and deacons, try attending a church where the pastor is everything. No elders, no deacons, only ushers, since he can’t preach and watch the back door at the same time. I’m not sure which is worse, a church where one person has all the control, or a church where a group of men have all the control. One is kicked out faster, I guess, when only one person makes the decision and doesn’t have to have a meeting about it.

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  134. okrapod: goodness help the preacher that got crosswise of the deacons and the choir and the WMU

    That is known as a meat grinder! Most deacons I’ve encountered in 60+ years as a Southern Baptist have been religious men, but spiritually destitute. There have been exceptions to that case, but only a few. I have actually known more spiritual deacon wives, than deacons! The real power-broker in most SBC churches is the off-key soprano in the choir. And those WMU women can keep a preacher in line. God bless them, as I think more about it, Southern Baptists have been a mess for years!

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  135. The Mohler crowd has been market-positioning, branding, rebranding, power shifting, etc. for months now. It was like a switch flipped one day and it began. When the switch was flipped they suddenly wen from jousting theological windmills to campaign mode. I wish I could remember everything, but I’ll list just a few to mame the point. These all may not make sense, but listing all the supporting detail and between the lines stuff would take forever.

    1. MLK 50 baited and troggered traditionilists who were either unable to respond or were unable to do so without sounding like and appealed to younger and audiences without sounding like a young Criswell. While some of the things written by the minority participants provided a different point of view, but most of the material written by the white guys tended to say, “I have a black friend”. It was ridiculous at times to watch white men with mostly white staffs moralize and preach to a culture that’s ahead of them when it comes to being surrounded by a cultural mosaic that’s not simply black and white.

    2. Danny Akin has become “Sir Tweets a Lot”. Recently he’s become tweeted about everything involving race; with or without checking the facts. Check out the staff directory at his seminary. He’s also retweeted lots of things questioning the character of Ken Hemphill and promoting Greear, while calling Hemphill his friend.

    3. The Nashville Statement seemed to be aimed at establishing the informal authority of the signatories within the traditional crowd while ostracizing those that might view things differently or take a different tone.

    4. Moral outrage when JD Greear is questioned or criticized in obscure forums; amplifying it far beyond the initial audience.

    5. Attacking Ken Hempill, who has a couple thousand Twitter followers, for having a Website hosted by the LBC. Meanwhile they use the resources and platform provided by their own denominational churches and entities to communicate with their much larger followings.

    6. Mac Brunson.

    7. Frank Page.

    8. Paige Patterson.

    9. Leaders who hold more than one full time job.

    I know some of this has been in the works for years and most of the traditionalists deserve the attacks directed their way, but the sheep are being deceived by the wolves in a big way.

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  136. Here’s an open question.
    Does anyone else think there are striking parallels between KP Yohanan and Darrell Gilyard?
    Did both receive assistance from PP?
    Did KP receive mentorship from PP?

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  137. I am not sure they would have gone into campaign mode without the fight against Greear. Once he was opposed, they truly went into aggressive mode. It is as if they see their time as come and will not be denied.

    Sadly, as others have stated, the changed PP and PP made to the convention make this easier. There is no moderate/”liberal” wing left to counterbalance them.

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  138. What Happened: 2. Danny Akin has become “Sir Tweets a Lot”. Recently he’s become tweeted about everything involving race; with or without checking the facts. Check out the staff directory at his seminary. He’s also retweeted lots of things questioning the character of Ken Hemphill and promoting Greear, while calling Hemphill his friend.

    Fascinating. I have noticed that the Between the Times website tied to SEBTS isn’t being updated.

    http://betweenthetimes.com/

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  139. Rambler: Paige Patterson

    “The story here is that, just like Moses, Nehemiah, Paul, and even Jesus, Paige Patterson has managed, over the course of his long ministry, to accumulate a few enemies clearly out to get him.”

    BARF

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  140. Rambler,

    Oh, please!!!!
    “The story here is that, just like Moses, Nehemiah, Paul, and even Jesus, Paige Patterson has managed, over the course of his long ministry, to accumulate a few enemies clearly out to get him. ”

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  141. What Happened: Danny Akin has become “Sir Tweets a Lot”

    The New Calvinists have used social media to their advantage. They are networked, linked and poised each day to spread their message and promote their messengers across cyberspace. The YRR run to their device each morning to check the latest Akin Activity, Piper Points, Mohler Moments, and Dever Drivel. It will be darn near impossible for traditional Southern Baptists to control the flood at this point; they have lost a generation to the reformed movement while the giant slumbered.

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  142. elastigirl: stupid spell check, substituting words without my permission! (entitled trumped up little machine, here)

    Dontcha’ just get tired of all the stuff they call ‘smart’ nowadays?

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  143. Leslie Puryear,

    “What Happened,

    There’s even more to this and you know it. I would kindly ask you to tell it all.”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++

    Les, i’d be interested to hear what you know, completely unvarnished.

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  144. The Southern Baptist Convention (June 10-13, Dallas) will come and go. Al Mohler will stand on the platform and give his usual seminary report. Thousands will be there to hear him. No prophet will stand and shout “You are the man!” to rebuke his rebellion. It’s the darnedest thing I’ve ever seen!

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  145. drstevej: “The story here is that, just like Moses, Nehemiah, Paul, and even Jesus, Paige Patterson has managed, over the course of his long ministry, to accumulate a few enemies clearly out to get him.”

    BARF

    The quote is quite barfy enough, but even more barfy is that they thought it was a good idea to make the parallel. Gag me! What is wrong with these people? They seem to have no sense of how absurd they are coming across.

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  146. I’ve read all the comments on both Patterson threads – it’s funny (the sad/weird type, not the ha-ha type) that the thing that has been running through my mind constantly is the proverb “He who lives by the sword will die by the sword.”

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  147. Rambler: As an update, now Rick Patrick at SBCToday has laid out a counter movement to sign and send in

    What do they put in that VBS KoolAid? Whatever it is, these folks have been drinking way too much of it for way too long.

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  148. GreekEpigraph:
    I’ve read all the comments on both Patterson threads – it’s funny (the sad/weird type, not the ha-ha type) that the thing that has been running through my mind constantly is the proverb “He who lives by the sword will die by the sword.”

    Sort of like Doug Wilson of the Kirk — the Doug Wilson who constantly uses words to wound and spiritually abuse — being stricken with cancer of the mouth. Perhaps someone turned Wilson’s imprecatory prayers around on him.

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  149. GreekEpigraph: I’ve read all the comments on both Patterson threads – it’s funny (the sad/weird type, not the ha-ha type) that the thing that has been running through my mind constantly is the proverb “He who lives by the sword will die by the sword.”

    But never underestimate how much Patterson likes being a spectacle in the arena. It has probably been years since he has felt so relevant.

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  150. Deb:
    JDV,

    Such important information you have shared! I’m putting this info. into a draft for an upcoming post.

    It came up in a link the other night from an old article I think from either here or Istoria, so the documenting of history proves its worth once again.

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  151. Annie,

    Thanks, nice catch Annie.

    So who are the other 29?

    It took 30 women to draft that first petition?

    And how many men drafted the second petition?
    I feel a lightbulb joke coming on…

    NPR:

    “Prior was one of 30 Southern Baptist women who drafted an open letter to the trustees of Patterson’s seminary that said in part they cannot allow that someone, quote, “with an un-biblical view of authority, womanhood and sexuality be allowed to continue in leadership.”

    Karen Swallow Prior is an English prof at Liberty U and a Research Fellow with the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention.

    She attends Rivermont Avenue Baptist Church now called Gospel Community Rivermont which looks to be Cooperative Baptist. Is her pastor, Glen A. Land, Richard Land’s brother?

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  152. Lea: Oh noes! The liberals!!!

    I still don’t get why these guys didn’t just become Presbyterians or create their own reformed Baptist denom. (I mean, money? I guess? But still. When you are so busy trying to rehab the southern Baptist name, to the point where you’ve taken it off all the signs, why not just jettison it??)

    As Max and probably others have noted, by a quiet coup, you get all the facilities bought and paid for, ready-made for seminary-trained authoritarians to dispatch their orders, I mean doctrinal perspective, from Mohler and his t4g crew.

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  153. brad/futuristguy: Mary K. Mohler
    Homemaker and Director of the Seminary Wives Institute of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
    Dorothy J. Patterson
    Homemaker and adjunct faculty member of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary

    No conflicts of interests there commenting on the family part of BFM2000, right?

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  154. SWBTS women’s program confuses/dumbfounded me. This is from one of the SWBTS women’s degree descriptions: “. Students gain understanding of biblical homemaking and focus on personal vocational assessment. ”
    Uhm, is there a “biblical” way to bake cookies and do laundry?

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  155. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar),

    Thanks — glad these resources are of help. It’s one of the ways I feel I can best contribute to the cause of advocacy for survivors of abuse, by helping document what’s unfolding, especially in real time. Having sources quickly available makes some of the observe-analyze-interpret process easier to get into, and better results for any “spiritual/institutional MRIs” that we’re doing.

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  156. Thersites:
    Also in the second letter:
    “We also wish to note that we are not speaking to validate our sisters’ voices. A woman’s voice does not need the affirmation of a man to be valid. They speak on their own with the authority and dignity of believers in Christ, created in the image of God.”
    These guys are off the Complementarian reservation.

    These Comp guys protesteth too much. That they have to say their sisters in Christ speak on their own, not needing the men’s validation, leads me to believe that the truth is the exact opposite of what they are purporting it is. They are trying too hard to prove that they aren’t what they actually are:. Dye in the wool Complementarians who believe that the Woman’s Place is not to usurp the role of man. And women speaking on their own authority in Christ does not fit into that mold. Who are they trying to kid?

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  157. JDV: by a quiet coup, you get all the facilities bought and paid for, ready-made for seminary-trained authoritarians to dispatch their orders, I mean doctrinal perspective, from Mohler and his t4g crew

    “Coup” is a good analogy. When a group of people take control of a country, they usually do so by means of military force. General Mohler has deployed his lieutenants to lead an army of young, restless and reformed to capture a tremendous bounty of stuff: six seminaries, extensive home and foreign mission agencies, large publishing operations, thousands of churches, and other vast resources around the world. If he had started his own thing, he would never had lived to see such an empire. Why labor when it can be had so easily? Southern Baptists have handed him the stuff without having to fire a shot. The Founder’s Ministry of old guard Calvinists within SBC would call it a successful “Quiet Revolution.” Al Mohler will soon be crowned King of his new Kingdom; he will be worshiped and adored.

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  158. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar):
    SWBTS women’s program confuses/dumbfounded me.This is from one of the SWBTS women’s degree descriptions: “. Students gain understanding of biblical homemaking and focus on personal vocational assessment. ”
    Uhm, is there a “biblical” way to bake cookies and do laundry?

    “Biblical homemaking” – that’s a new one on me. And women actually go to college and pay tuition to learn homemaking? These women are being scammed and the college is just making money off of them for a degree that will basically do nothing to make them employable in the marketplace.

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  159. Deb:
    Darlene,

    Remember that around 200 men signed the petition intended for women only.

    LoL! Yep, because we can’t have women acting on their own. Even though the Comp men in their statement claim the exact opposite.

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  160. Bene D: Karen Swallow Prior is an English prof at Liberty U and a Research Fellow with the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention.
    She attends Rivermont Avenue Baptist Church now called Gospel Community Rivermont which looks to be Cooperative Baptist. Is her pastor, Glen A. Land, Richard Land’s brother?

    This church is the result of a merger between Gospel Community Church, a young an up and coming Acts29 church, and Rivermont Ave. Baptist Church, a dying SBC church. It is no longer listed with Acts29 but merger documents indicate GCC was. Neither Church is listed as a CBF church.

    Prior works with Russell Moore at the ERLC. Neither are friends of Patterson. Mixed motives???

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  161. Max: At the end of the day, as together they strip the “Whosoever will may come” gospel from SBC life, none of them come across as nice.

    Billy Graham was Baptist, yes?
    Didn’t he preach, “Whosoever will may come…” as they sang:

    Just as I am, without one plea,
    But that Thy blood was shed for me,
    And that Thou bid’st me come to Thee,
    O Lamb of God, I come! I come!

    Just as I am, Thou wilt receive,
    Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;
    Because Thy promise I believe,
    O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

    Just as I am, Thy love unknown
    Has broken every barrier down;
    Now, to be Thine, yea, Thine alone,
    O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

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  162. okrapod: there is a comfort and good nutrition in simple dishes of locally grown food

    Yes. And there is comfort and good spiritual nutrition in simple fellowship with locally grown faith – neighborly rather than mega, or satellite. No agenda from the Central Committee (except the Heavenly Committee of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). No dynasty to fund.

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  163. ishy: I don’t think they are really Calvinists, they just claim to be. It’s more of a Judaic sect than anything resembling Christianity.

    That is Calvinism. The ‘chosen people’ morph into the ‘elect’.

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  164. Maple Lady,

    The Calvary Chapel we attended was a one man show with his “yes” men around him. He now lives in a house on the church property. Guess who owns said property? The pastor.

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  165. Darlene: These women are being scammed and the college is just making money off of them for a degree that will basically do nothing to make them employable in the marketplace.

    Right? What a waste of money. You can probably learn anything you need to know about ‘homemaking’ for free on pinterest…without the brainwashing.

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  166. Deb,

    Deb

    Akin just doesn’t impress me. He frequently says dumb things and seems like a weasel. I’m guessing that the website is no longer being used because it doesn’t support an individual or group brand. All content seems to be designed to correspond to the tweet cycle.

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  167. Nathan Priddis: Here’s an open question.
    Does anyone else think there are striking parallels between KP Yohanan and Darrell Gilyard?
    Did both receive assistance from PP?
    Did KP receive mentorship from PP?

    Have you asked Warren Throckmorton? He’s the go-to on all things KP Yohannon.

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  168. Max: The Southern Baptist Convention (June 10-13, Dallas) will come and go. Al Mohler will stand on the platform and give his usual seminary report. Thousands will be there to hear him. No prophet will stand and shout “You are the man!” to rebuke his rebellion. It’s the darnedest thing I’ve ever seen!

    And I have decided I am NOT going to Dallas. Just thinking about driving in Dallas makes me itchy, like I’m about to bust out in hives all over. But yeah, the SBC annual meeting could use a prophet or two or five.

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  169. Lea,

    “Once you realize they can’t do anything to you salvation wise, you only have to realize they are basically bullies. Call them on it and leave. You do have to deal with the relationship piece of it, which may be rough.”
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++

    it is so important not to make church your only source for friendship / relationships.

    for practical reasons like you describe. but also because there are fabulous human beings in one’s neighborhood – friendship waiting to be discovered. lovely people, for mutual enrichment.

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  170. Ken P.Rivermont Ave. Baptist Church…Neither Church is listed as a CBF church

    Karen Swallow Prior listed Thomas Road Baptist as her church on the petition, but her Liberty University bio says she is a member of Rivermont Avenue Baptist. Rivermont is still listed on the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of Virginia website.

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  171. What Happened,

    “The Mohler crowd has been market-positioning, branding, rebranding, power shifting, etc. for months now. It was like a switch flipped one day and it began. When the switch was flipped they suddenly wen from jousting theological windmills to campaign mode.”
    ++++++++++++++++++

    could the timing for this have corresponded to the ETS meeting in November 2016, San Antonio?

    ESS was roundly trounced. The foundation for complementarianism fell apart, and SBC’s theology & doctrine stars looked like fools.

    i remember noticing dead calm after that. very striking. like, CBMW and all the other entangled entities were thinking “if we stop talking about it, maybe everyone will forget. let’s pretend it never happened.”

    the next thing i heard from them was The Nashville Statement. it seemed to me that the purpose of it was to save face, to find a new raison d’etre, a new thing to once again make them virile and relevant. something new to stoke the culture war — a reinvented purpose. re-branding, new image, looking like spiffed up culture warriors.

    made me sick. instead of using women for that purpose because the basis for it collapsed, they simply found a different people group to exploit. and a rabid audience to exploit, as well.

    and there was power to be had in blackmailing people with careers to lose into signing their Nashville Statement. It was so easy. Anyone who didn’t sign was automatically branded “a liberal”.

    but regardless of what one thinks about The Nashville Statement and CBMW, could the ETS 2015 have been the trigger that flipped the switch for other rebranding mentioned by What Happened?

    did the embarrassment of the collapse ESS weaken the image of multiple SBC entities so much that they all had to rebrand and come up with a new strategy?

    or was it some other issue connected with ETS 2016 that could have been the trigger for all this?

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  172. elastigirl,

    I must admit that I don’t know that much about the ETS, but this recent flurry of activity seems to be directed primarily at this years convention with the added benefit of settling old grudges. What is most troubling to me is that they are doing all this when Greear will obviougly be the next president. The dysfunction of the old guys was fairly linear where it existed, but some these new guys seem to possess a deep darkness.

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  173. Jerome,

    Thanks Jerome.

    As you noted about Karen Swallow Prior’s Liberty bio, this is under community service:

    Member of Rivermont Avenue Baptist Church and reader for its Celtic Christian worship service

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  174. What Happened,

    “but some these new guys seem to possess a deep darkness.”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    less linear, deep darkness… would that be sneaky and deceptive in shamelessly manipulative and self-serving pursuits?

    sneaky and deceptive in quest for power?

    not uncomfortable seeing cruelty to others as collateral damage if it gets them what they want? (well, this is nothing new, is it.)

    i covet plain speaking. too many years in christian culture where people simply do not say what they mean and mean what they say.

    what do you mean, “deep darkness”?

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  175. jyjames: Billy Graham was Baptist, yes?
    Didn’t he preach, “Whosoever will may come…” as they sang:

    Just as I am, without one plea,
    But that Thy blood was shed for me,
    And that Thou bid’st me come to Thee,
    O Lamb of God, I come! I come!

    Just as I am, Thou wilt receive,
    Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;
    Because Thy promise I believe,
    O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

    Just as I am, Thy love unknown
    Has broken every barrier down;
    Now, to be Thine, yea, Thine alone,
    O Lamb of God, I come, I come!

    That sounds very free will. That was much used in baptistville for a very long time. But and also there was another line of thinking in baptistville. Here is the routine invitation hymn that was used at the then big baptist church in Louisville when I was a child. It sounds more calvinistic. Even as a child I understood the ‘maybe Jesus wants you and maybe not’ of this hymn.

    Pass Me Not, O Gentle Saviour
    Pass, me not O gentle Saviour,
    Hear my humble cry.
    While on others Thou art calling,
    Do not pass me by.

    Saviour, Saviour,
    Hear my humble cry.
    While on others Thou art calling,
    Do not pass me by.

    Let me at Thy throne of mercy,
    Find a sweet relief.
    Kneeling there in deep contrition,
    Help my unbelief.

    Saviour, Saviour,
    Hear my humble cry.
    While on others Thou art calling,
    Do not pass me by.

    Trusting only in Thy merit,
    Would I seek Thy face,
    Heal my wounded, broken spirit,
    Save me by Thy grace.

    Fanny J. Crosby, 1868[1]

    Both strains of thought were present, side by side, back in the day. When I keep saying that there was a strain of ‘calvinistic’ thinking back when, this is the sort of thing I am referring to. Baptistville has tolerated aspects of both sides of that divide for as long as I know.

    Personal: This ‘maybe and maybe not’ was what was the negative that I feared as a child. And this was what I saw in contrast to the fact that the Catholics even baptized their very babies-a whole different idea in my childish mind as to whether Jesus wanted me or not. This very thing set the stage for my never emotionally embracing baptist ideation about Jesus and the church, even while I forced myself to intellectually believe what the baptists were telling me. Until I got to where I could comfortably say to myself that my parents and my parents religious traditions were mistaken, and that Jesus wants people including me.

    I am not RCC, but the difference in ‘feeling’ still persists. The calvinists can shove it. It is written that God thusly loved the world such that… They can like it or lump it.

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  176. And let me add to an as yet unpublished statement. We used to sing ‘Red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in his sight’. Somewhere we never got around to young and old, sick and well, rich and poor, male and female, slave and free, married and single, sane and not so much, influential and nobody special, born and unborn, and even (gasp) ‘them’ as well as ‘us’, gifted and not, and leader and follower.

    People have written about the difference between the ‘church’ model and the ‘cult’ model. Inclusive vs exclusive. We are miles away from adequately solving that issue ideologically.

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  177. What Happened: this recent flurry of activity seems to be directed primarily at this years convention with the added benefit of settling old grudges

    No doubt about it. Paige Patterson is one of last of the Big Dogs standing in the way of completing SBC Calvinization. Traditional Southern Baptists sure needed another champion of the faith besides PP in these last days of the denomination; the man was done some time ago, he just hadn’t quit yet.

    What Happened: The dysfunction of the old guys was fairly linear where it existed, but some these new guys seem to possess a deep darkness.

    There is little evidence that some of these new guys know Jesus. They seldom talk about Him and certainly don’t possess Christlike character as they push and shove their way into SBC life.

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  178. okrapod: Personal: This ‘maybe and maybe not’ was what was the negative that I feared as a child. And this was what I saw in contrast to the fact that the Catholics even baptized their very babies-a whole different idea in my childish mind as to whether Jesus wanted me or not.

    This is very interesting, since the presbyterians also baptize babies…

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  179. elastigirl: i covet plain speaking. too many years in christian culture where people simply do not say what they mean and mean what they say.

    what do you mean, “deep darkness”?

    Elastigirl

    I basically mean that some people may never be caught in scandalous behavior that subjects them to public ridicule. Even those of us who see where they are wrong, want to find a linear motivation such as money or fame that are temptations to all of us, but there’s something broken and darker than the greedy preacher at work. I think “whitewashed tombs” and form of godliness come to mind. I’m sorry that I can’t say it more clearly, but it’s difficult to describe in a way that doesn’t lead to false negatives. I sometimes feel compelled to describe what I see with pinpoint Biblical accuracy, but sometimes “scripture also says” is the best route to take.

    I’ve got almost 40 years of experiences, observations, and memories in the Church/church. As long as I can remember, I’ve seen and catalogued events, behaviors, impressions, reactions, and other fuzzy things that seemed Spiritually off. In hindsight, I understand a little more about some of these things than I did at the time, but there are many things I still don’t understand. Through it all, I’m learning to stand alone if necessary when I see those things that that are, not only Biblically questionable, but also seem to come from a spiritually dark or vacuous place. I’m still unsure to what degree I can or should find fellowship with decent people who either don’t see what’s happening or possess the strength to resist. I agree with Max that a few Godly older are usually the ones that resist and serve well.

    Spiritually dark and spiritually vacuous aren’t perfect theological categories, but they guide me as I seek true Spiritual fellowship at a time when leadership seéms to have replaced humility as the most desired attribute at the institutional level. The spiritually dark tend to be at war with the Spirit, while the Spiritually vacuous tend to proceed with or without the Spirit; never recognizing the difference in Spiritual atmosphere. I think the linear folks who are prone to use their positions as a means to get something are just a subgroup of the vacous, which is another way of saying carnal. The Spiritually dark seem to be far more complex; covering the position more than the benefits. They see real Spiritual activity as a threat. I believe that there are still good people in positions of institutional authority that are struggling just like the rest of us, but there is little encouragement and reward within the system for them to do it right.

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  180. Max: The Southern Baptist Convention (June 10-13, Dallas) will come and go. Al Mohler will stand on the platform and give his usual seminary report. Thousands will be there to hear him.

    “THE VOICE OF A GOD, NOT OF A MAN!
    THE VOICE OF A GOD, NOT OF A MAN!”
    — Acts 12:22

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  181. Lea: This is very interesting, since the presbyterians also baptize babies…

    Do you mean according to the doctrine of children of the covenant presumed to be regenerate if born to covenant parents based on the biblical promise to extend salvation through the generations?

    As a youngster I knew next to nothing about the presbyterians-just baptist and catholic. As an adult I have heard somewhat more, and for clarity I should be saying ‘baptist calvinism’ since there are variations among calvinists.

    That said, I am not seeing that the presumption of regeneration based on parentage by which one is a child of the covenant is any different from just one kind of expression of calvinist style understanding of election-some are and some are not- maybe so and maybe not. Smart kid to get born to covenant parents but as for the rest of the kids of the world…..

    We probably don’t need to go down this road. I admire the fact that covenant-believing presbyterians seem to care more about their kids than non-covenant-believing baptists do, but I do not admire the selectivity with which they differentiate their kids from non-covenant kids in the assumptions that go along with that.

    There are various reasons that some baptize babies and some do not. Some reasons are better than others, I think. But baptism is not the issue. Maybe God has ‘chosen’ you, kid, and maybe not-that is the issue I was trying to address. I found it highly destructive.

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  182. What Happened,

    thank you for the time you took to share your thoughts. when things are murky, it means scheming shenanigans.

    to me, they are more saavy & sophisticated in acquiring and protecting money and power. it’s truly amazing what they can rationalize away.

    but we see what they do. the zits on the face of it all, betraying the junk running through the blood stream of the system they choose to feed on.

    like protecting CJ Mahaney and SGM / SGC who scheme and manipulate to avoid honesty, transparency, accountability, to avoid what is right.

    the only energy being spent by SBC / TGC / T4G / 9 Marx / CJ Mahaney / SGM / SGC is to hide and protect from the truth. that’s the whole object. completely forgotten are the kids and families who were sexually abused. they don’t factor in at all.

    now that’s not murky. that’s something concrete. that’s something worth making a ruckus over. making signs to carry. interrupting a church service or a meeting over. climbing on top of the conference table and sitting there looking them all in the eye & telling the truth that all the other grown men are too timid and dainty to do.

    i believe many in the room would share those convictions, and inside be saying “AMEN” “You go, girl!” You go, guy!”

    in fact, i believe some in the room would join you. (or whoever it is who decides to make a ruckus)

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  183. Rambler: Sadly, as others have stated, the changed PP and PP made to the convention make this easier. There is no moderate/”liberal” wing left to counterbalance them.

    There are only the True Believers (Hebertist, Dantonist, Jacboin, Thermidorian) and the Universe Cannot Have Two One True Ways.

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  184. Max: There is just something not right about a 30-year old “lead” pastor and his band of 30-year old “elders.”

    Like Solomon’s son/successor Rebohoam and his dudebros/drinking buddies?

    Rags (David) to Riches (Solomon) to Rags (Rebohoam) in three generations, with a civil war and broken-apart kingdom in the mix?

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  185. Nick Bulbeck: Their idea of “elders” also borrows heavily from the concepts of the “self-made man” with his owner-run business, and of the popular guru-author.

    “Self-made men” like Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, and Ray Kroc who hated the guts of anyone with more formal education than themselves? And were real pieces of work as people?

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  186. Lea: Café Du Monde is famous. They have amazing beignets! Don’t knock em.

    Around 20 years ago, I was in the Big Easy for Tech Ed training classes, staying in the Quarter. Cafe du Monde Beignets and decaf au lait every morning, watching the ships pass by above our heads on the other side of the levee.

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  187. Everything, of course, always and forever, boils down to tne nasty Calvinists. It’s all so simple. Oh, if only life were that simple and clear.

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