The SBC, SWBTS, Paige Patterson and Abuse: Slapping Lipstick on the Gorilla in the Room

“It’s not consent if you make me afraid to say no” Anonymous 

https://www.publicdomainpictures.net/en/view-image.php?image=38599&picture=thinking-gorilla
Thinking Gorilla

Last week, I told Deb that Paige Patterson would ride into the sunset to claim his prize of a mansion built for him on the campus of SWBTS with a promise of perpetual care in this life. I also said he would be called President Emeritus and would give his farewell speech at the SBC convention in June with the obligatory standing ovation. I guess I will have to wait to see what happens in June.

Paige Patterson gets rewarded for his years of service (after agreeing to step down.)

Religion News Service apparently agrees with the Deebs that this supposed punishment seems more like a reward in Jonathan Merritt’s Paige Patterson has resigned. Imagine if he were Tim Cook.    

But after weeks of inaction, the board’s decision feels more like a celebrated send-off than a stiff censure. While they dismissed Patterson to save face under overwhelming pressure, he was also offered a pile of consolation prizes. Patterson will be honored with the title of president emeritus of Southwestern, for example. Both he and his wife, Dorothy, have been named theologian-in-residence. The couple will receive compensation from the school, and they will be allowed to live in the luxurious and spacious retirement residence they were building for themselves on campus.

Merritt made a good argument that had Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, acted and said what Patterson did, he would have been booted forthwith, minus the mansion. And Merritt rightfully shaded the SBC for their lack of inaction. I think he meant the entire SBC, not just one of the factions.

Cook would have been terminated immediately. He would not have received compensation or honorary titles or a plush retirement residence in Silicon Valley. Let this sink in: America’s most prominent tech company has a stronger ethical compass when it comes to the dignity of women than America’s largest Protestant denomination.

But this is, of course, not a statement on the moral fortitude of the tech industry. The same would be true for an advertising executive on Madison Avenue, a hedge fund manager on Wall Street, a prominent actor in Hollywood or a politician inside the Beltway of Washington, D.C.

Which is to say that many of the secular communities in America that Southern Baptists have painted as evil possess more moral courage than they do. Consider that for a moment and it will tell you all you need to know about the current state of America’s largest Protestant denomination.

Prepare yourself for the standing ovation at the SBC 2018 convention-so says Ed Stetzer.

My prediction of a standing ovation for Paterson’s *farewell, good and faithful friends* speech at the SBC is being echoed by others. Today, Ed Stetzer, writing for Christianity Today actually said that Paige Patterson would get a standing ovation at the SBC 2018 convention since he did all sorts of *cool* things for the SBC so it might be OK, maybe…

…Patterson didn’t just lead a grassroots movement. He went on to serve as president of not one but two seminaries. He served two terms as president of the convention itself. He has received numerous honors, awards, and more standing ovations than I can count. He has been rightly appreciated for his service.

…Patterson, in a sense, built an era. I am glad. I am a Southern Baptist today because of its inerrantist theology, and I’ve personally benefited from that era and from the SBC that he helped create.

…If Patterson preaches at the SBC, he will, because of his past work, get a standing ovation.

PP has a lucrative retirement waiting and will have plenty of time to blow the heads off the beautiful creatures he encounters on African shoot and kill safaris. (How much of these were paid for by SBC funds?) His visage, along with Dorothy’s, will be enshrined in the stained glass window section of the SWBTS chapel (along with his friend, Paul Pressler.) As I said on Twitter earlier today, and I stand by my comment, PP is laughing into his root beer in his paid for mansion.

He has also been named *theologian-in-residence (and quite a residence it is!)

Today, Wade Burleson documented another situation in Paige Patterson and the Rape Victim He Shamed. This should be no surprise to anyone who has followed TWW. Paige Patterson rejected the complaints of 25 women who came to him to report molestation by Darrell Gilyard. Never forget, PP will be also called the theologian-in-residence (along with his wife, Dorothy!) The same man who said women had to show him physical proof of molestation and bring 2-3 witnesses for every report of Gilyard’s behavior is the new theologian extraordinaire? Seriously?

The gorilla in the room: Sex abuse cover up in the SBC

Sadly, the woman who was raped in Wade’s story chose to cast shade on the #metoo movement while at the same time speaking out against Patterson. We are so sorry for her ordeal and are furious at the response of PP. We called for his resignation 9 years ago. However, it was that very movement that has given her the freedom to speak out. It was also women like Jules Woodson (her assault happened in an SBC church) and the others in the #churchtoo movement that gave her the possibility of her story being heard. (PS: I, too, am Biblically conservative and I support the #metoo movement. The Bible is really against rape from what I can tell.)

Here’s what’s interesting (ladies, don’t be offended). This rape victim is not a fan of the MeToo movement. She is as biblically conservative as they come.

As those who read our blog know, Amy Smith and I have been working on probably the most well documented story of sex abuse coverup we have ever written about. I hope to be able to tell you why soon. On Monday I spoke with Detective Cisneros who is working on this case and he has asked us (not told us-asked) not to reveal the name of the perp for just a bit longer. However, through a series of bizarre coincidences, we discovered that the perp, who is working for the SBC, has also been working with 9th and 10th grade students in an SBC affiliated church. This has caused us great concern for the welfare of the children and the church has been made aware.

The perp has been correctly named by others on Twitter. I do feel comfortable in revealing that it is the International Missions Board of the SBC who are alleged to have refused to bring this to the police. Remember the name of the person who is the head of the IMB? That’s right, it’s David Platt who is on the other side of this stupid theological divide.

Let me remind our readers of something. I am no longer a member of the SBC. I am a conservative Lutheran. One Lutheran member asked me about the continued strife within the SBC. He asked why the Baptists, after all this time, haven’t settled their doctrinal differences. I laughed and said that they never will. There is no denominational hierarchy with rules for church except for no women pastors and no gays in leadership. Other than that, the sky’s the limit. There are some who believe it is their job to set the SBC on a new path with new thinking or the old-forgotten thinking or the one-true-way of thinking every 10 years or so. He asked me how I stood it. I said I couldn’t and left. So, I no longer have a dog in this hunt. But I do care about abuse no matter the doctrine and that is why I follow this stuff. Even more importantly, my BFF, Deb, is holding on for dear life and I care about her.

This is the real problem.

Our current story is not garnering the attention that it should. Why is that? The leaders who know (or should know) or who have not reported this to the police are on the other side of the nonCalvinist/Calvinist divide in the SBC. Does this mean that Calvinists are bad and the nonCalvinists are good? Hardly. Both sides have said some awful things to victims of domestic violence and victims of sex abuse.There are no white hats in this story.

In fact, Deb hopes to document some comments by SBC men like Bruce Ware and others in CBMW (housed at SBTS). So, why do I think there will be no petitions from concerned SBC women when we point out the other side? #silenceisspirtual when the ones involved are members of *my* tribe in the SBC.

Both sides have covered up child sex abuse.(Have I said it enough?) I believe that there are some tough days ahead  for the SBC. The coming revelations (beyond even our story), and they are coming, will show how widespread the problem within the SBC really is. Neither side in the current SBC theological rodeo will prove to be victor. All sides will need to hang their heads in shame.There is a gorilla in the room and the quick application of lipstick does nothing to make the SBC look pretty. It doesn’t matter who is elected President of the SBC. Neither side seems to have the wherewithal to do the right thing when it comes to abuse in their tribe.

#metoo #churchtoo #sbctoo


Comments

The SBC, SWBTS, Paige Patterson and Abuse: Slapping Lipstick on the Gorilla in the Room — 225 Comments

  1. Dee,

    I am paying close attention to the IMB abuse/cover-up. To be as truthful as I know how, I have NO CLUE how you and Deb do it. It’s so … so…. very difficult to keep up with family, work, local and global ministry, a blog – and stories like Patterson – while at the same time keeping up with new and breaking stories. But, I plan in the next few days to review all that you’ve written and get caught up. It can be overwhelming at times, but every woman abused needs the same support and help – I’ll see what I can do. If you have specifics, please let me know. I’ll do what I can.

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  2. https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/maryland-police-charged-three-church-leaders-abusing-teen-girls_us_5b05bfcfe4b07c4ea10470ce

    Someone in the DC area is taking notice and action regarding clergy child sex abuse (Prince George’s County), and it is NOT the church. It is law enforcement. Isn’t Sovereign Grace in the vicinity?

    From your post: “Our current story is not garnering the attention that it should.”

    What else is new? The abuse is rampant in the church and as a whole, the church has deaf ears and a big rug – for sweeping under. That’s a magnet, for “up-to-no-good”, in the church.

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  3. ‘Above reproach’ and so forth from 1 Timothy 3 appears to just be a sometimes thing for many powers that be, here and elsewhere. One wonders if that will be the case with SBC pastor Rick Patrick, who made that disturbing public post (see Wade’s two most recent blog entries, including comments — parental discretion advised) and an apology that according to him “was designed to illustrate that anyone can make the most heinous accusation against anyone else, and will be presumed guilty when there is not enough time to sort out the evidence, as was the case in the Trustee Meeting.” That the particular illustration (sic) was used gives me apprehension as to what message may have been proceeding from the pulpit.

    He explains his actions further: “I don’t normally talk this way. I was deeply disturbed that a man I greatly admire seemed to be the victim of a “hit job” by certain individuals out to get him. The timing of the Post story breaking just seemed too convenient.” So we learn that if ‘certain individuals’ are ‘out to get’ someone a pastor likes, the next logical step should not involve naming individuals involved in gang-rape in order to help the hit-job victim’s case.

    More: “I now have reason to believe, as astonishing as it is for me to say it, that this may actually be the truth, in spite of the convenient timing, and the story of what took place may very well make every Southern Baptist sick.” What changed in the 90 seconds he says it took him to decide to remove his post?

    “For years, I have placed Dr. Patterson on a pedestal, holding him in extremely high regard. The very notion that any of these charges could have a hint of truth to them was a thought I frankly found very difficult to entertain. Now, I do not know what to think.” Perhaps even if one places one on a pedestal, one who is serving as a pastor may want to be slow to speak about those who are risking their reputations in bringing issues to the fore such as occurred here.

    This isn’t to cast aspersions on repentance; the guy publicly planned to approach his pastoral brothers named in the initial post. (Wade indicated he’d pass along apologies to the woman and her husband, so there’s that.) They may well have gained a brother, to paraphrase Matthew 18. But what of the pastoral standards in 1 Timothy, Titus, and elsewhere? Living Biblically, we’re told of grievous wolves that will not spare the flock, and in Luke 6:45, we hear the mouth speaks out of the abundance of the heart.

    Also, his church promotes membership (its website’s even named joinfirst.net), with the encouragement for potential church members to buy a Thom Rainer church covenant friendly tome (with a link to Amazon — only $9.84) listed before considering ‘the meaning and significance of baptism’. I wonder how many members would, with an apology, avoid further comment or scrutiny had they posted something as disturbing in a public forum that identified them with the church. (Discipline, anyone?) And using an example from this article, how many people like a Tim Cook or others who made a gang-rape posting naming multiple public figures who not see consequences in their vocational life, especially if if involved, leadership and authority?

    Consider what Patrick wrote about an occasion of reportedly tearful repentance:
    http://sbcvoices.com/i-agree-with-danny-akin/
    (Here’s Wade’s blog post about it: http://www.wadeburleson.org/2014/06/paige-pattersons-apology-to-people-hes.html)

    Personal repentance on Patterson’s part on this one occasion in 2014 where he was called out was welcome and fine. However, as we can see now, there apparently was much more due that wasn’t forthcoming to the aggrieved until the present day. Thus, for those affiliated/covenanted/associated with Patrick’s church and para-church groups, expressed repentance should not replace hard conversations concerning the impact of today’s actions. That goes for other similar situations. Such exercises on oversight and accountability — encouraged by so many in the modern church primarily when it’s top-down — must be the norm at the first sign of issues, not when the barn’s already burned down.

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  4. jyjames:

    Someone in the DC area is taking notice and action regarding clergy child sex abuse (Prince George’s County), and it is NOT the church. It is law enforcement. Isn’t Sovereign Grace in the vicinity?

    Yep, a little further northwest

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  5. The woman who contacted Wade Burrelson and reported her story brought to mind the young woman who was raped at Masters Seminary. Same story. Same cover up. Same playbook. Despicable.

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  6. The failure of those who have fought their way to the top of the heep to deal with these crimes appropriately is the real stumbling block. That is what gets in the way of people coming to Jesus. Those who claim His name are flying a false flag.

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  7. As long as people have to have something specifically spelled out in scripture in specific words, as opposed to ideas and principles, then there will be those who sacrifice people to words.

    As long as other people place ‘the church’ as of higher value than the people who make up the church, then there will be those who sacrifice people to ‘the church’. The organization.

    In one of Jesus’ references to judgment he was very specific that what one did to people, hungry and naked and such people, was of higher value than the claims of those who had done ‘religious’ and even dramatically religious stuff.

    People must not worship the bible and must not worship the church. Worship belongs only to God himself. When God sent HIs Son because He loved the world it was to save those who believed, not to limit his grace to writings or to organizations, however much they may contribute to the bigger picture. If we sacrifice people then we have misunderstood God, misunderstood scripture and misunderstood what the church is.

    And if we make ‘allowances’ for people who worship something other than God, however religious they may sound, then we are playing on the wrong team and need to plain old repent of our own idolatries.

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  8. Hey Dee, will you add #believeSBCwomen to that list of tags?

    @GovPappy pointed out to me recently that you, Amy, myself, and basically every other SBC woman who cares have talked about Paige Patterson for *years*, but ppl only cared when Jonathan Merritt brought it up. Obviously, the word of multiple former and current SBC women wasn’t enough–a man had to validate it.

    Even worse, when Wade Burleson published the apology of the Ignorant Pastor who wrote the awful Donkey-Sex-Joke, he told the guy, “The victim’s husband had just found out the week before that she was raped. How do you think he felt when he read that awful joke?”

    The Ignorant Pastor said, “Wait, you mean the rape actually happened?”

    If the SBC would actually believe SBC women, this would be a whole different church culture.

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  9. Mercy:
    The woman who contacted Wade Burrelson and reported her story brought to mind the young woman who was raped at Masters Seminary. Same story. Same cover up. Same playbook. Despicable.

    Yep. Exactly the same story. Color me shocked.

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  10. I read Wade’s column slowly, thoughtfully, and with much sorrow. The response of “Ignorant Pastor” (IP), as XianJaneway listed him, show the truly overheated hero-worship that is keeping blinders on (in addition to all the other theological/complementarian/smugness issues the SBC leadership is suffering from.

    I forgive the IP, because his apology seems heartfelt. I’ve read enough of his pieces to “hear” the difference in the wording. I hope that this will be a clarion call for him, and others like him to truly start to listen to what is going on.

    Albert Mohler, for all his faults, may have had the scales fall from his eyes. I have a tendency to believe and see the best in people, so perhaps others could do a bit more critiquing of it: https://albertmohler.com/2018/05/23/wrath-god-poured-humiliation-southern-baptist-convention/

    Good day to you all, and talk more soon.

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  11. Rambler: Albert Mohler, for all his faults, may have had the scales fall from his eyes. I have a tendency to believe and see the best in people, so perhaps others could do a bit more critiquing of i

    Perhaps so. But I read it and saw two possibilities. One is like you say, that he indeed has some idea of how bad this may get and he may have some actual qualms about what has been going on. A diagnosis of impending awfulness does have a way of getting through to people to some extent.

    On the other hand, Al is very clever and has been very clever for a long time, and what he said sounds very clever, so perhaps it is just ole Al trying to snatch some stuff out of the fire and rebuild his empire after the flames die down. Meanwhile, perhaps he can use his verbal expressive talents to good use during this difficult time.

    Or both-a little of both.

    I do not tend to see the best in people as a starting place, because I do not think that scripture or experience starts with how good people are. We tend to act first on self preservation. That is built into our biological existence and is necessary, and if we do not do that to some extent we label that pathology. We do not tend to first go grab our cross and embrace it. It requires diving grace before we get over ourselves at all.

    But if Al sees it to his advantage to steer his sycophants and those indebted to him in a slightly different direction, then maybe that is a good idea regardless of what his motivations may be.

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  12. Rambler: Albert Mohler, for all his faults, may have had the scales fall from his eyes. I have a tendency to believe and see the best in people, so perhaps others could do a bit more critiquing of it

    Willing to step in the breach as an other, at the risk of being cast as one who doesn’t believe and see the best in people — along with other others who cast a questioning eye at Mohler’s motives and actions. If it hadn’t taken the words of Rachel Denhollander a few weeks back to act as a crowbar to give Mohler a last-minutes, hair’s breadth separation between him and Maheney at the T4G conference, the notion of falling scales might ring a smudge truer to me.

    Also, given Mohler’s history of taking real,estate on the new-Calvinist power structure front, words of regret of past SBC and a call for a new direction also might have a different import as an institution resistant to the NeoCal takeover comes up right for the picking. As far as words that give an indication of whether Mohler will sit by passively at this juncture or seize upon another opportunity, imgo back to this for perspective:

    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 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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  13. dee:
    Wade Burleson,
    I will be in touch with you. I have more specifics than I have ever had on a case. including a transcript done by a court reporter of the IMB meeting/investigation

    Sounds like fireworks prior to the 4th of July this year.

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  14. okrapod,

    JDV,

    I thank you both. I understand your viewpoints, and think you are both correct. I am waiting for the other shoe to drop with him.

    I know I am a softie, partially because from my viewpoint, as okrapod said, “because I do not think that scripture or experience starts with how good people are”. But I am forgiven, and so I try to extend that to others. Work out your salvation with fear and trembling and all that. (Not animal-like fear of God, but reverence, awe, respect, and not works righteousness, but straining towards Christlike-ness.)

    If he is moved to use his position to help out, then I think that is good, regardless of his interior motivation. May God take what Mohler intends for himself and use it for HIS Glory. When the house is on fire, I won’t refuse the water hose from my neighbor, even if I feel like my neighbor probably could have cleared out that brush that caused the fire. I’ll deal with that later.

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  15. drstevej: Sounds like fireworks prior to the 4th of July this year.

    And then things like this make me go fire up the popcorn machine.

    But as I told my wife last night, with everything going on, I’m not sure there’s enough popcorn in all of Orville Redenbacher’s kingdom.

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  16. XianJaneway:
    Hey Dee, will you add #believeSBCwomen to that list of tags?

    I believe SBC women but I also tend to believe all women who report sex abuse. The problem with a hashtag that says I believe SBC women is that it sounds a bit exclusive when it comes to sex abuse/harassment. That is why the addition of the word *too* is great. It makes the hashtag seem more inclusive.

    So, I suggest #IbeleiveSBCwomentoo

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  17. XianJaneway: If the SBC would actually believe SBC women, this would be a whole different church culture.

    There’s a legacy of a respectful disregard of women. Politely talk above and around them, ignore their presence and their stories.

    Finally, when there is a response, it comes in the form of a joke about assault.

    The real joke is that this is deemed leadership. It’s not funny. It’s disgusting, shameful.

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  18. XianJaneway: Yep. Exactly the same story. Color me shocked.

    I find these stories believable because they are so similar they clearly come from the same sort of teachings. Ditto the ‘youth pastor gets quietly moved elsewhere after ‘messing up’ with students’ one. This is their way of dealing with these things.

    As for the #metoo movement shade, I didn’t see anything too bad in the WashPo article, although I haven’t read Wade’s. Just that this wasn’t about it for her, and I totally get that. This is about someone finally talking about Patterson, and her saying, oh yes, that tracks because this happened to me too. That is how conversation works, and how we make these connections.

    that said, there is nothing ‘unbiblical’ about talking about true things that happened, simply because they were in the past. They just caught the goldenstatekiller and he raped women 40 years ago. Good. Still guity, no matter how long it took.

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  19. “There is no denominational hierarchy with rules for church except for no women pastors and no gays in leadership. ”

    This seems to be Patterson and the ‘conservative’ resurgence’s real legacy. All that matters is this. All manner of vile behavior is acceptable so long as you accept these two rules.

    Pass.

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  20. Until SBC proves otherwise, it appears Wade is in the minority.

    When rape goes unreported and the community covers it up, it’s everyone’s business.

    I’m not Baptist, never have been, but this needs to be dragged into the light. There are many vulnerable people in churches, these stories are only the tip of the iceberg.

    This isn’t just a Baptist problem either.

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  21. PP won; probably the only thing he didn’t get was to name his own successor. Bingham, the interim president, was most likely not PP’s choice, but other than that he won.

    Decency, common-sense, kindness, love, and the Gospel all lost yesterday.

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  22. “He has also been named theologian-in-residence” (Dee)

    Dr. Patterson has been accused of a lot of things during his long SBC tenure, but I’ve never heard anyone call him a theologian! SBC seminaries don’t attract real theologians. Consider these “theologians” who were deans of theology at SBC seminaries before moving up the ranks: Russell Moore, Danny Akin … New Calvinist theocrats, but not theologians!

    “The gorilla in the room: Sex abuse cover up in the SBC” (Dee)

    Lest we forget … PP is a defendant in a 2018 lawsuit which alleged he assisted in covering up sexual abuse by his long-time friend and co-champion of the Conservative Resurgence, Paul Pressler.

    “If Patterson preaches at the SBC, he will, because of his past work, get a standing ovation” (Ed Stetzer)

    Dr. Patterson received plenty of standing ovations for his past work; no need to give him another one. He ceased making any significant contributions to the SBC long ago. Heaping accolades on him at this point would be an ovation heard around the world for all the wrong reasons. SWBTS has already presented him with an honorable title for his retirement years and a comfortable home … let it rest.

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  23. drJ: PP won; probably the only thing he didn’t get was to name his own successor. Bingham, the interim president, was most likely not PP’s choice, but other than that he won.

    My guess is that they didn’t make Patterson’s candidate the interim is that they felt it would be strategically better to wait and place him as the permanent president. I am confident that the next president will be a PP insider. Why? No board in it’s right mind would allow the exiting president to stay on campus with a title and compensation if they wanted to reach outside that inner circle. No way anyone else would touch it.

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  24. On one of these threads, someone noted the bizarre and deliberate misinterpretation of Genesis 3 in the ESV, Calvinism’s new Bible. See link: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/jesuscreed/2016/09/12/the-new-stealth-translation-esv/)

    What I want to know is why the subordination of women so important, so much so that seemingly decent men will tolerate abuse and ignore the marginalization of half of mankind?

    Seriously, this is so big for these churchianists; one has to wonder why. Perhaps, because without inequality – someone to be superior to – these narcissists have no one to Lord it over, no excuse for their good-old-boy hierarchy. To be ‘king’ one must have subjects, and these men are determined to be kings.

    I am beginning to appreciate anew scripture’s condemnation of the ‘rulers of this world’. It is not just speaking of kings and presidents, but of anyone, be it in politics, business, religion or the home, who perceives themselves as ‘over’ others and more worthy of honor, praise and all of the accoutrements of superiority.

    It is the ultimate expression of unChristlikeness. They have turned ‘anti-Christ’ into science fiction absurdity while exhibiting it in thought, word and deed.

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  25. Dee,

    I appreciate the work you are doing on the IMB cover-up and look forward to hearing the whole story.

    Comparing your recent twitter photos, it seems that you use some extra rest. You are starting to look a little like Dana Carvey.

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  26. Lea: That is how conversation works, and how we make these connections.

    Yes, the standard silent Christian nice lady deal is over. It’s not nice to stand idly by when there’s predatory aggression on the prowl, with cover-up, in the church. Nor is it godly. There’s a new standard for godliness, for both men and women.

    “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord,” including standing up for vulnerables against iconic but dysfunctional leadership (the golden calf, in this case).

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  27. truthseeker00: I am beginning to appreciate anew scripture’s condemnation of the ‘rulers of this world’. It is not just speaking of kings and presidents, but of anyone, be it in politics, business, religion or the home, who perceives themselves as ‘over’ others and more worthy of honor, praise and all of the accoutrements of superiority.

    It is the ultimate expression of unChristlikeness. They have turned ‘anti-Christ’ into science fiction absurdity while exhibiting it in thought, word and deed.

    From slavery to patriarchy. What next?

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  28. okrapod: On the other hand, Al is very clever and has been very clever for a long time, and what he said sounds very clever, so perhaps it is just ole Al trying to snatch some stuff out of the fire and rebuild his empire after the flames die down.

    From the article:
    “The issues only grew more urgent with the sense that the dated statements represented ongoing advice and counsel.”

    He took great pains to refer to the age of the black eyes advice, and didn’t mention that the ‘that 16 year old sure is built’ stuff was only a few years old. Then he says the above, about ‘dated’ statements. That is minimizing.

    This bit about the conservative resurgence was interesting.

    As I recently said with lament to a long-time leader among the more liberal faction that left the Southern Baptist Convention, each side has become the fulfillment of what the other side warned. The liberals who left have kept marching to the Left, in theology and moral teaching. The SBC, solidly conservative theologically, has been revealed to be morally compromised.

    Which is worse, ‘marching to the left’ or ‘morally compromised’?? Funny how this leftward march hasn’t created the same problems, seemingly.

    He touches on comp but will not admit it’s an issue. It just ‘looks’ like it could be. But really, comp should protect people, blahblahblah.

    Lets look at results. Let’s look at fruit. What has ACTUALLY happened?

    I don’t think he is willing to get it, it would cost too much.

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  29. Whew! SBC’s “traditional” wing is coming unglued over Patterson’s exit: http://sbctoday.com/

    I predict that multiple non-Calvinist SBC churches may very well opt out of the denomination in the days ahead, especially if J.D. Greear is elected SBC President in June. The tension is at a fever pitch … they may be throwing chairs at each other at the SBC annual meeting, rather than praying.

    As a 60+ year Southern Baptist, I am extremely saddened to see the agendas of men supersede the Great Commission of Christ in a once-great evangelistic denomination. Sure, there have always been bad actors among the 16 million SBC members, including non-Calvinists, Calvinists, and whatevers. Unfortunately, the actions of a few vying for control and power have taken the denomination off-course from preaching the Gospel and making disciples for Christ.

    One other prediction: Max will exit the blogosphere if/when the New Calvinists accomplish their mission. Greear’s election will be a final nail in the coffin for me. I have been a reluctant participant of blogs – only entering the fray to offer some thoughts here and there about what I see. A fighter knows when he has lost the battle … at least in this world.

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  30. Stan: Every Mark Driscoll fanboy is suddenly a fierce champion of women, and always has been. Gag.

    In a perverse sense, that kind of “man” always has been a fierce champion of women – at least, of any helpless women who are weak enough to need him to champion them. They can’t cope with women who are manifestly their equals, though. (Driscoll has shown that he can’t cope with men who are his equals either.)

    I think I’m just writing out what you left unsaid there, though!

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  31. Max: One other prediction: Max will exit the blogosphere if/when the New Calvinists accomplish their mission. Greear’s election will be a final nail in the coffin for me. I have been a reluctant participant of blogs – only entering the fray to offer some thoughts here and there about what I see. A fighter knows when he has lost the battle … at least in this world.

    Max, Don’t go. Even if you leave the SBC please stay with us in the blog-sphere. We need your wisdom and perspective. Some of us consider ourselves missionaries, sent from the old SBC to the new SBC and we need your moral support.

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  32. Former SBC, SWBTS alumni, and proud I no longer am. I am in the process of converting to an denomination. No they certainly are not perfect, but at least they are trying to do better.
    Watch, next month’s convention will be a dog and pony show of how great we still are..

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  33. Al Mohler weighs in:

    “Judgment has now come to the house of the Southern Baptist Convention. The terrible swift sword of public humiliation has come with a vengeance. There can be no doubt that this story is not over.”

    The Wrath of God Poured Out — The Humiliation of the Southern Baptist Convention … https://albertmohler.com/2018/05/23/wrath-god-poured-humiliation-southern-baptist-convention/

    And in typical Mohler-style, he takes no personal responsibility for the mess!

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  34. In an article releasr today by Al Mohler about all of this, he wrote the following:

    “We thought this was a Roman Catholic problem. The unbiblical requirement of priestly celibacy and the organized conspiracy of silence within the hierarchy helped to explain the cesspool of child sex abuse that has robbed the Roman Catholic Church of so much of its moral authority. When people said that Evangelicals had a similar crisis coming, it didn’t seem plausible — even to me. I have been president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary for twenty-five years. I did not see this coming.”

    Apparently he doesn’t read Wartburg Watch if he didn’t see this coming. I am skeptical that Mohler wasn’t aware of abuse issues prior to the Patterson debacle. One has to wonder about the truth of his statement given his ardent defense of CJ Mahaney.

    Keep up the good work. You’re making a difference.

    His article can be read at https://albertmohler.com/2018/05/23/wrath-god-poured-humiliation-southern-baptist-convention/

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  35. Max: “Judgment has now come to the house of the Southern Baptist Convention.”

    Where are they going to go, Al?!

    Without realizing it, Dr. Mohler may have just proclaimed judgment on the SBC himself by using the Word of God, which will not come back void.

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  36. Max,

    Max, I write a local blog that generally only involves local politics. It does have a little of everything….that said I remember a line ” The only causes worth fighting for are the lost ones. ”
    I often get discouraged, but I remember I’m not the only one who feels this way…I’m in spot I can say stuff others cannot….

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  37. okrapod: As long as people have to have something specifically spelled out in scripture in specific words, as opposed to ideas and principles, then there will be those who sacrifice people to words.

    As long as other people place ‘the church’ as of higher value than the people who make up the church, then there will be those who sacrifice people to ‘the church’. The organization.

    Yes.

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  38. Max,

    Personally, I doubt we’ll see a major migration of non-Calvinist churches from the SBC. Some of the larger churches might leave but 83% of SBC churches have less than 200 in attendance. In my experience with working with small churches, most of them don’t know what’s going on nationally nor do they care. If it doesn’t directly affect their church, it doesn’t concern them.

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  39. Max:
    Al Mohler weighs in:

    “Judgment has now come to the house of the Southern Baptist Convention. The terrible swift sword of public humiliation has come with a vengeance. There can be no doubt that this story is not over.”

    The Wrath of God Poured Out — The Humiliation of the Southern Baptist Convention … https://albertmohler.com/2018/05/23/wrath-god-poured-humiliation-southern-baptist-convention/

    And in typical Mohler-style, he takes no personal responsibility for the mess!

    But was the story over as far as Sovereign Grace, at least as it involved CJM and measures of restoration as far as T4G, Mr. Mohler? It certainly seemed that some acted like it was…

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  40. jyjames: There’s a legacy of a respectful disregard of women. Politely talk above and around them, ignore their presence and their stories.

    Finally, when there is a response, it comes in the form of a joke about assault.

    Of course, there is no respect in any of this.

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  41. Leslie Puryear: Personally, I doubt we’ll see a major migration of non-Calvinist churches from the SBC. Some of the larger churches might leave but 83% of SBC churches have less than 200 in attendance. In my experience with working with small churches, most of them don’t know what’s going on nationally nor do they care.

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  42. JDV,

    You’re so right! Back when the Battle for the Bible was raging, my SBC friends had no idea what was going on. Meanwhile, I knew all about it because of reading books like Battle for the Bible and articles in Christianity Today. And, I’m not a Southern Baptist.

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  43. Nick Bulbeck: Stan: Every Mark Driscoll fanboy is suddenly a fierce champion of women, and always has been. Gag.
    In a perverse sense, that kind of “man” always has been a fierce champion of women – at least, of any helpless women who are weak enough to need him to champion them.

    In my D&D days, I’ve always had a weakness for Damsel in Distress scenarios. Same with pulp fiction reprints.

    The difference is I KNOW it’s fiction and these Real True Men DON’T.

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  44. truthseeker00:
    On one of these threads, someone noted the bizarre and deliberate misinterpretation of Genesis 3 in the ESV, Calvinism’s new Bible. See link: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/jesuscreed/2016/09/12/the-new-stealth-translation-esv/)

    What I want to know is why the subordination of women so important, so much so that seemingly decent men will tolerate abuse and ignore the marginalization of half of mankind?

    Seriously, this is so big for these churchianists; one has to wonder why. Perhaps, because without inequality – someone to be superior to – these narcissists have no one to Lord it over, no excuse for their good-old-boy hierarchy. To be ‘king’ one must have subjects, and these men are determined to be kings.

    I am beginning to appreciate anew scripture’s condemnation of the ‘rulers of this world’. It is not just speaking of kings and presidents, but of anyone, be it in politics, business, religion or the home, who perceives themselves as ‘over’ others and more worthy of honor, praise and all of the accoutrements of superiority.

    It is the ultimate expression of unChristlikeness. They have turned ‘anti-Christ’ into science fiction absurdity while exhibiting it in thought, word and deed.

    You can’t understand Complimentarianism unless you understand the beginning. Chapter 3 is not Chapter 1 but close enough.

    Ask yourself this.
    Who is the Serpent?
    Why did he want Eve dead?
    If both the serpent and the woman have seed, who are they?

    There last one is the direct link to the subject of this blog post.

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  45. Max: Leslie Puryear: Personally, I doubt we’ll see a major migration of non-Calvinist churches from the SBC. Some of the larger churches might leave but 83% of SBC churches have less than 200 in attendance. In my experience with working with small churches, most of them don’t know what’s going on nationally nor do they care.

    Then they, for all practical purposes, ‘left’ the SBC years ago. If they have continued to support the Cooperative Program, Lottie Moon, and Annie Armstrong – not realizing that funds were being toward Calvinization of the denomination (e.g., church planting program) – then they have been participants in the rebellion. Being uninformed / misinformed is one thing, but to be willingly ignorant is quite another. The pew may not have known what was going on, put their pulpits did … these pastors should have had family talks a long time ago.

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  46. Leslie Puryear,

    Les, I thought the exact same thing when reading Mohler’s statement!

    Mohler said he didn’t see a crisis “coming”. The crisis has been here all along, it didn’t just arrive. Unless one considers the “crisis” to be the exposure of these problems and the resulting embarrassment to the SBC and financial implications. That is the “crisis” to Mohler.

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  47. Lea: Which is worse, ‘marching to the left’ or ‘morally compromised’?? Funny how this leftward march hasn’t created the same problems, seemingly.

    Re “Marching to the Left”.
    Like Vlad Putin, he’s stuck in the Cold War.
    “COMMUNISTS! COMMUNISTS! COMMUNISTS!”

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  48. truthseeker00: Seriously, this is so big for these churchianists; one has to wonder why. Perhaps, because without inequality – someone to be superior to – these narcissists have no one to Lord it over, no excuse for their good-old-boy hierarchy. To be ‘king’ one must have subjects, and these men are determined to be kings.

    “If Ah ain’t better than a n*gg*r, who do Ah have to be better than?”
    — Trailer-trash Ku Kluxer of the Fifties (i.e. Second from the Bottom)

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  49. Tom R: Mohler said he didn’t see a crisis “coming”.

    Good Lord! I guess it depends on which crisis he is referring to. I guess he doesn’t think that stripping Southern Baptists from their non-Calvinist identity is a crisis he largely initiated.

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  50. Headless Unicorn Guy: In my D&D days, I’ve always had a weakness for Damsel in Distress scenarios. Same with pulp fiction reprints.

    The difference is I KNOW it’s fiction and these Real True Men DON’T.

    This reminds me of the article going around about the star wars reboot a while back and how the girl being capable just really bothered this random guy, and women just need to kick back and let the man be manly because otherwise they can’t handle it. Or something.

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  51. Tom R: Mohler said he didn’t see a crisis “coming”. The crisis has been here all along, it didn’t just arrive. Unless one considers the “crisis” to be the exposure of these problems

    Bingo.

    None of this is new. These people have no understanding of history at all.

    They just want to continue keeping it quiet. No.

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  52. Lea: Bingo.

    None of this is new. These people have no understanding of history at all.
    This has been going on since the 70’s I am a personal witness to that. i.e. a church school in Jacksonville FL (NOT trinity.) I know that was independent baptist but still. There was a cd written in the 90’s called Argyle Park and it’s about church abuse and it was sold in Christian bookstores for years. It was about a friend or friends of the writers or relatives who had been abused in their nice church by the pastor I guess.

    They just want to continue keeping it quiet. No.

    People have spoken in the past, and truly tried to bring things into the open.

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  53. Max: That’s going to be tough row to hoe.

    I got real tickled at the sub-text a few months back when one of our old school members told a young SWBTS undergrad student that the woman who used to teach the theology subject she was taking had been one of the most popular profs on campus.

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  54. The decision to leave my SBC church and the entire denomination was a painful one that took us about three years to make. The tipping point was when I questioned some iffy financial transactions made by the senior pastor (I was the chair of the budget and finance committee) and was told by one of the associate pastors, “Sometimes as a church member you just have to put up with things that you don’t agree with.” That remark sparked something that I had been holding in for years, and I said “No, sir, I do not. This is a volunteer organization. I drive by six churches to get here. I don’t have to put up with anything I don’t choose to.” We left a few months later. The senior pastor was fired a year after we left.

    The most disheartening thing about the whole situation was how uncritical and naive the church members were. All the signs of financial abuse were there, but when I questioned certain transactions church members kept telling me, “He’s God’s man here; we just have to trust his heart.” Why? If behavior doesn’t pass the smell test in your business or personal life, why would you excuse it in your church?

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  55. Sarah Smith of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram did an excellent job of live tweeting from the site of the Trustees meeting last Tuesday. Since she wasn’t allowed in the room, she kept us informed and entertained while waiting for anything “real” to happen.

    Sarah, unfortunately, got caught up in the middle of a Twitter battle over the proper hashtag for the upcoming 2018 SBC Convention in Dallas. Some were telling her #SBC18 while others where insisting on #SBCAB18. I never could figure out which contingent, non_Cals vs. Cals, was promoting which hashtag. Typical SBC.

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  56. Rambler:
    I read Wade’s column slowly, thoughtfully, and with much sorrow.The response of “Ignorant Pastor” (IP), as XianJaneway listed him, show the truly overheated hero-worship that is keeping blinders on (in addition to all the other theological/complementarian/smugness issues the SBC leadership is suffering from.

    I forgive the IP, because his apology seems heartfelt.I’ve read enough of his pieces to “hear” the difference in the wording. I hope that this will be a clarion call for him, and others like him to truly start to listen to what is going on.

    Albert Mohler, for all his faults, may have had the scales fall from his eyes.I have a tendency to believe and see the best in people, so perhaps others could do a bit more critiquing of it: https://albertmohler.com/2018/05/23/wrath-god-poured-humiliation-southern-baptist-convention/

    Good day to you all, and talk more soon.

    Albert Mohler, on the contrary, took this as an opportunity to push his views on the inferiority and subjugation of women (equal in something, but different in role) as God’s perfect design. It’s all fine and wonderful, if people would just do it right. Be perfect as God is perfect. Men who are lording it over their fellow female believers just need to do it lovingly, without abuse.

    I would not phrase that in terms of Mohler seeing the light or embracing women as God’s beloved children, whom he sent his son to redeem.

    No, in his theology, for women to be redeemed did not take Christ’s death and resurrection. For women to be redeemed, according to his theology, they must kowtow to a man.

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  57. Max: Good Lord!I guess it depends on which crisis he is referring to.I guess he doesn’t think that stripping Southern Baptists from their non-Calvinist identity is a crisis he largely initiated.

    He wouldn’t see *that* as a crisis.
    “Not a bug, but a feature.”

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  58. refugee: Albert Mohler, on the contrary, took this as an opportunity to push his views on the inferiority and subjugation of women (equal in something, but different in role) as God’s perfect design. It’s all fine and wonderful, if people would just do it right.

    That’s what I saw too (commented above).

    They are wed to this theory and will not dump it.

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  59. FW Rez:
    Sarah, unfortunately, got caught up in the middle of a Twitter battle over the proper hashtag for the upcoming 2018 SBC Convention in Dallas. Some were telling her #SBC18 while others where insisting on #SBCAB18. I never could figure out which contingent, non_Cals vs. Cals, was promoting which hashtag. Typical SBC.

    That has got to be one of the dumber Twitter wars out there. And there are some really lame ones.

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  60. ION: Cricket

    So, England won the toss and batted first against Pakistan in the First Test at Lord’s.

    The good news is, Alastair Cook didn’t go for a duck. The bad news is, everyone else did. England were 184 all out; Pakistan are 36-1 in reply, but on the respective displays so far it looks unlikely that the visitors will have to bat twice.

    #AnotherInningsDefeatForEngland

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  61. FW Rez: Max, Don’t go. Even if you leave the SBC please stay with us in the blog-sphere. We need your wisdom and perspective. Some of us consider ourselves missionaries, sent from the old SBC to the new SBC and we need your moral support.

    I agree. If Max bails, TWW will suffer significant loss.

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  62. Regarding the story in the WashPo about Patterson and woman who was raped.

    This rape victim was placed on probation by the seminary for having a man in her apartment.

    Can we talk about how dumb it is that a grown woman of 23 would be on probation for having a ‘man in her apartment’? I’m so glad I went to a secular school.

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  63. Plus smaller SBC churches actually need their local support. The national level SBC is a dumpster fire. Locally, many are still going about the work they’re called to. I’m SBC, I’ve dealt with one accusation of abuse, from a minor, about her father. First thing I did was contact law enforcement. They investigated and could not verify the accusation. Most of us little guys are very diligent in doing the right thing with these issues. The big dogs…….?

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  64. Leslie Puryear: Max,
    Personally, I doubt we’ll see a major migration of non-Calvinist churches from the SBC. Some of the larger churches might leave but 83% of SBC churches have less than 200 in attendance. In my experience with working with small churches, most of them don’t know what’s going on nationally nor do they care. If it doesn’t directly affect their church, it doesn’t concern them.

    I hope Deb sees this comment. She would agree with you.

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  65. dee: I hope Deb sees this comment. She would agree with you.

    I get that, honestly. If they got clued in enough to stop giving money to the larger organization that might be nice.

    It seems like the churches that do leave, leave over the treatment of women and other such issues, and go maybe CBF.

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  66. dee,

    I’ll also bet he is on SWBTS post convention panel “Conversation With Living Legends”!

    He has not been reprimanded, he has been validated.

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  67. Max: That’s going to be tough row to hoe.I’ll pray for you.

    I wish we had enough SBC women for a “women’s March. We need to march right out SBC the doors!
    And Max, stay around, please. We would miss your company so much!

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  68. There is a group of SBC messengers who are going to move to remove Patterson from speaking at the convention.

    And it sounds like that if he does speak, there are going to be people standing through it in protest. Several different conversations about that on Twitter and how to best protest.

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  69. Max,

    Dear Max,
    Please do not stop commenting. You give me hope that there are some real Baptists out there. We are not SBC but UK Baptists. Most Baptists I know from the UK are mainly unaware of all the shenanigans going on over here. Since coming to the USA we have searched in vain for a conservative Baptist church which is mainly Arminian and which accepts women in the pastorate. As egalitarians we are astounded at the complementarian teaching on marriage which is pervasive here. So we need to hear from you. A voice of sanity in a mad calvinist world.

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  70. A guess please:

    How many women will be messengers to the Dallas SBC meeting who are not either spouses of ministers, employees of church or denomination or students who are on “scholarship?”

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  71. Anthony:
    A guess please:

    How many women will be messengers to the Dallas SBC meeting who are not either spouses of ministers, employees of church or denomination or students who are on “scholarship?”

    I don’t know, but it’s probably a lot less than it used to be.

    However, most students won’t be able to be voting messengers. Each church only gets two messengers. And most churches don’t consider students important enough to be a messenger.

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  72. Max,

    “Do thou, oh Lord, remember us as a branch of thy visible church, and do thou graciously establish and further the interests that pertain to the church of Christ here and throughout the whole world. May we always have jealousy for the purity and the honor and the peace of thy church throughout the whole world. May we recognize, indeed, that the church is the bride of Christ, his body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all. And grant that we may constantly have in mind the advancement of thy church and of thy kingdom to the very ends of the earth.”
    (Part of an introductory prayer by the late Prof. John Murray before preaching on Romans 12:1-3 “Be Ye Transformed”).

    Much as we sometimes disagree, there is more that keeps us together. You have constantly sought to advance the kingdom of Christ and it is inconceivable to me that you should contemplate retiring from the field. More than ever, you need to stand in the thick of things, maintaining the cause of Christ. (And that applies to Nick too – there is no such being as an ex-Christian). Stand your ground!

    (And my first “grown-up” Bible was also Thomson’s Chain Reference and I’m now works no my way through my fourth.) God bless you Max.

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  73. Anthony:
    A guess please:

    How many women will be messengers to the Dallas SBC meeting who are not either spouses of ministers, employees of church or denomination or students who are on “scholarship?”

    Wild guess…5….,might be too high.

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  74. JDV said,

    One wonders if that will be the case with SBC pastor Rick Patrick, who made that disturbing public post (see Wade’s two most recent blog entries, including comments — parental discretion advised) and an apology that according to him “was designed to illustrate that anyone can make the most heinous accusation against anyone else, and will be presumed guilty when there is not enough time to sort out the evidence, as was the case in the Trustee Meeting.”

    Some guy did something like this about a year ago to Dee.

    His first name was Frank or Fred.

    He sent Dee a tweet (or was this on the blog? – though I think it was a tweet) where he accused her of molesting kids, or something of that nature.
    When she protested, he said he was intentionally making up false information about her to prove a point about innocence vs. guilt.

    This is a very unwise, distasteful way of going about making that particular point.

    It also seems lost on a lot of conservative Christians that traditionally in the United States (and I’d imagine other nations) that victims are usually not believed.

    If a victim does step forward, he or she is dragged through the mud, so that other victims see this,and they are reluctant to step forward in other cases.

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  75. Daisy: When she protested, he said he was intentionally making up false information about her to prove a point about innocence vs. guilt.

    Yes, a certain type of man seems to think this is ‘clever’. It isn’t. It doesn’t even rise to the level of satire.

    Daisy: When she protested, he said he was intentionally making up false information about her to prove a point about innocence vs. guilt.

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  76. XianJaneway: @GovPappy pointed out to me recently that you, Amy, myself, and basically every other SBC woman who cares have talked about Paige Patterson for *years*, but ppl only cared when Jonathan Merritt brought it up. Obviously, the word of multiple former and current SBC women wasn’t enough–a man had to validate it.

    Janeway, I sent you a tweet about this on Twitter, but if you’re still reading here, speaking of Believing Women, please see this post I did (and one or two I did under it on the previous thread):
    http://thewartburgwatch.com/2018/05/22/kcbi-dallas-christian-radio-sets-a-dangerous-precedent-by-promoting-tullian-tchividjian-saying-nothing-in-the-past-disqualifies-anyone-from-ministry/#comment-371265

    Some conservative Christians continue to misunderstand or deliberately distort what anti – sexism or anti – sexual abuse advocates mean with certain phrases, and I’m afraid “Believe Women” is one of those phrases.

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  77. Drove by the SWBTS campus this afternoon. The residential side of the building has “Hacienda Del Pastor” inscribed in stucco over one window. If Patterson see’s himself in this role, he is definitely not finished with trying to oversee how the institution is ran.

    The building is styled after a hacienda including tile roof. Doesn’t architecturally match anything anywhere in the neighborhood. Close access, however, to Pecan Manor if he wants to drop in on the new prez.

    One scary thought: to side step criticism of keeping PP on campus, the trustees deed the land to a third party.

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  78. XianJaneway:
    @GovPappy pointed out to me recently that you, Amy, myself, and basically every other SBC woman who cares have talked about Paige Patterson for *years*, but ppl only cared when Jonathan Merritt brought it up. Obviously, the word of multiple former and current SBC women wasn’t enough–a man had to validate it.

    Sarah Bailey is the one who broke the story. Merritt was not the one who “brought it up”. Merritt simply tweeted Smith’s story early on, likely because he has a journalist’s news feed. And since it was in the national news, I think it would have become a topic anyway. It was someone else that sent me the story around the same time Merritt tweeted about it.

    Though I agree that these kinds of stories often don’t get attention until men talk about them, I think you may be giving attention to Merritt that Sarah Bailey deserves.

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  79. Rambler: Albert Mohler, for all his faults, may have had the scales fall from his eyes. I have a tendency to believe and see the best in people, so perhaps others could do a bit more critiquing of it:

    I’ll critique it: Until Albert Mohler puts his foot down and tells his good buddy CJ Mahaney to agree to and work with an independent investigation of the coverup of child sexual abuse within Sovereign Grace Ministries/Churches, I don’t believe anything he says.

    Al Mohler knows CJ has a problem and it’s not going away. CJ Mahaney and Sovereign Grace were listed in an article in the NYTimes a couple of Sundays back along with Andy Savage, Bill Hybels and Les Hughey. It’s.Not.Going.Away.

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  80. Stan: Every Mark Driscoll fanboy is suddenly a fierce champion of women, and always has been. Gag.

    If that was true, then “Real Marriage” would be out of print. It’s a disgusting book. The first chapter has Mark verbally smacking around his wife Grace.

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  81. truthseeker00: What I want to know is why the subordination of women so important, so much so that seemingly decent men will tolerate abuse and ignore the marginalization of half of mankind?

    After having read stuff such as Lundy Bancroft’s book about Domestic Violence… abusers get something out of the abuse.

    Maybe these men enjoy having power and control and women are the controlled. They like being able to boss women around. They also don’t want to share power, and if they opened pastoral positions up to women and the like, that would make women more competition.

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  82. Stan: Every Mark Driscoll fanboy is suddenly a fierce champion of women, and always has been. Gag.

    Did you see a few years ago, I think it was when Driscoll was rebranding himself, I think it was on one of his new websites, he included some stuff on one of his web pages about how he wants himself and/or his church to be considered safe places for abused women?

    Bah ha ha ha.

    If I were an abused women, Driscoll would be among the LAST people I would go to for help. (Add John Piper, Paige Patterson, etc etc, all the usual Complementarians to that list).

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  83. I thought this was very pertinent to the topics that are usually discussed at this blog (the whole article was pretty good, but I’m just quoting one or two parts of it):

    The Enduring Appeal of Creepy Christianity
    https://www.nationalreview.com/2017/11/roy-moore-christianity-built-on-fear/

    By David French

    This is where faith has to trump politics. Defending predators in the Church — or going the extra mile to grant them the benefit of the doubt — for the sake of protecting a political advantage carries with it great costs.

    The church is already defined in the eyes of a hostile secular culture more by its quest for power than its faithfulness to scripture.

    Roy Moore’s world is a world built on fear. It’s a world that glories in its extremes. It’s a world that’s destined for ruin, and before it goes down, it will consume and damage the most vulnerable among us — unless we end the cult of the Christian celebrity and the quest for certainty first.

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  84. Max,

    Per your link.
    One post on there (SBC Today) says the pastor who made the disgusting Donkey joke is gone now:

    Connect 316 does not condone, endorse, or approve of Rick Patrick’s remarks. We find them reprehensible and unbecoming of Christian comportment.

    We have accepted the resignation of Rick Patrick from Connect 316 and have called upon him to apologize to each individual he insulted and ask for their forgiveness.

    Although Rick Patrick was not speaking on behalf of Connect 316 when he made those deplorable remarks, we understand how terribly hurtful they were and would like to extend our apologies to each individual who was maligned.

    Dr. Patrick’s comments do not reflect the character, heart, and purposes of C316.

    Source:
    http://sbctoday.wpengine.com/statement-from-board-of-directors/

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  85. Max,

    Also per your SBC Today link I just submitted a reply there to someone named “Mary,” I think in the thread called “My Heartfelt Apology and Resignation,” and they have my comment in mod. I don’t know why. I hardly ever post there. I don’t know if they’re just mod-ing that one post, or if it’s just me, or what.

    But Mary was actually minimizing how awful pastor Rick Patrick’s donkey joke was, a meme joke that was in fact mocking sexual assault victims (which she was denying).

    I wanted to correct Mary on that, but my post did not go through over there.

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  86. Max: The Wrath of God Poured Out — The Humiliation of the Southern Baptist Convention … https://albertmohler.com/2018/05/23/wrath-god-poured-humiliation-southern-baptist-convention/
    And in typical Mohler-style, he takes no personal responsibility for the mess!

    I was saying at Julie Anne’s blog the other night that unless and until churches such as the SBC completely remove Complementarianism, they’re not going to fix anything.

    Complementarianism (and all its sexist baggage and world views) is part of the problem that gets Southern Baptists into these messes, where you have SBC men doing stupid, horrible things like advising sexual assault victims not to report their attacks to the police, to go back to their abusive husbands, etc.

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  87. Daisy,

    I posted a comment early this morning that was put in moderation (which rarely happens). I think the site is moderator-less since Patrick’s resignation. We’ll see how long the site is dormant.

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  88. okrapod,

    I use to scratch my head with respect to the parable of good sheppard leaving the 99 to look for the one lost sheep. Now it seems to me more clear, or at least applicable to this discussion… . the one lost is more important then collective group….

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  89. Daisy: Complementarianism (and all its sexist baggage and world views) is part of the problem that gets Southern Baptists into these messes, where you have SBC men doing stupid, horrible things

    Agreed. We need these guy’s women to stand up and tell their sorry husbands/boyfriends to sit down and shut up for a change!

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  90. Lea,

    I spoke to my Lead Pastor about leaving the SBC, and he said, “We haven’t given money to the national convention in well over a decade. We give a *tiny* amount of money to the state convention, but the majority of our missions fund goes to [name of the large project we support regularly].”

    I was surprised, because my reaction was,” I don’t want my church associated w/these people!” But as long as the $$ wasn’t funding them, the leadership doesn’t seem to worry about it. Yet.

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  91. Ken P.:
    Daisy,
    I don’t know what’s going on with their site, because any time I’ve posted there in the past, my posts have always gone through instantly, no delay at all.

    I posted a comment early this morning that was put in moderation (which rarely happens).I think the site is moderator-less since Patrick’s resignation. We’ll see how long the site is dormant.

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  92. To my TWW fan club:

    I will continue to offer my half-wit and wisdom to blog topics as long as the Lord leads.

    Got a word from the Lord this afternoon, after sharing with you earlier today about growing weary with the SBC battles. My wife and I baby-sat our 4 year old grandson. At one point, he stopped playing and began to sing an old hymn “In the Garden” … without missing a word, the little guy sang:

    “I come to the garden alone
    While the dew is still on the roses
    And the voice I hear, falling on my ear
    The Son of God discloses
    And He walks with me
    And He talks with me
    And He tells me I am His own”

    Whew, a tear-jerker! I’ll stick with it, folks! See you tomorrow.

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  93. Daisy: Complementarianism (and all its sexist baggage and world views) is part of the problem that gets Southern Baptists into these messes, where you have SBC men doing stupid, horrible things like advising sexual assault victims not to report their attacks to the police, to go back to their abusive husbands, etc.

    True. The moment a category of people is deemed less than, and another category entitled (with theology to boot), there is the opportunity for bad things to happen. Pride is deadly.

    Even evil people are created by God. There’s no higher or lower class, just a wide berth to steer clear of danger. It’s not arrogance or elitism. Just safety.

    “And have mercy on some, who are doubting; save others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh.” [Distance.] Jude 22-3.

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  94. Max,

    Max, Wonderful.

    Have you heard William Reynold’s story about the inclusion of the hymn in the 1980 Baptist Hymnal? There was some debate that the song’s focus was too personal. Someone in the room started quoting: “The Lord is MY Shepherd….”(emphasis mine). “In the Garden” made the cut.

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  95. It simply seems to me that The Church as we know it IS the problem. I know this thought is not unique; countless gave their lives in the sixteenth century in the quest to leave the ‘official’ church and have the sort of home-based, non-hierarchical, non-authoritarian gathering extolled by Jesus and his apostles.

    But it seems that for centuries we have been brainwashed into believing that God’s children must be part of an authoritarian, hierarchical institution, which of course necessitates authoritarian rulers and people to rule over.

    There is no justification in scripture for The Church as we know it. Period. Perhaps now is the time, finally, for people to begin to understand this. God has never called, or been pleased with self-claimed church officials who seek to control what believers think, believe, say and do.

    It is not ‘just’ complementarianism – that is simply par for the course. Perhaps it is time that the naive, oppressed sheep learn, once and for all that The Church and The Body of Christ are two distinct entities. In many cases, nearly mutually exclusive. We have only one true shepherd, and he did not organize an institution of powerful undershepherds to ‘rule’ in his stead.

    Maybe God is rising up to teach his people that ‘doing church’ is not what following him is about, in spite of the claims of those who benefit personally from the existence of the Institutional Church.

    I know, I know; I can look back not too far and see the day in which I would have, without the slightest doubt, condemned all who did not regularly attend church as godless and disobedient. Now, I cannot help but wonder if God is not calling me, and others to ‘Come out of her, my people’.

    I am afraid that the ‘institution’ of The Church is no different than all of the other institutions of men. Designed by self-seeking narcissists to benefit themselves at the cost of those they seek to fleece. Abuse is necessary to intimidate and control. It turns the abusers into desperate criminals who dig themselves in deeper and deeper, and the abused into traumatized victims incapable of functioning without assistance. In other words, it creates the wounded that provide job security for the ‘healers’.

    I wish I was merely being cynical, but I am afraid I am deadly serious. If I haven’t tried them all, I have come pretty close, and at the end of the day, it is always the same story. A charismatic guy mouths nice-sounding words, only to lead to the eventual discovery that it is all about him, rather than those who he is supposed to be willing to lay down his life for.

    Satan is very, very clever, and once he begins to persuade the religious ‘leaders’ that their job is to protect the institution rather than the sheep, even the most well-meaning are destined for ruin. How many times have I heard the story of how ‘Our church went south. The pastor became a different person’ and so on. The Institution IS the problem, not a few bad apples rolling around within.

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  96. Daisy: His first name was Frank or Fred.
    He sent Dee a tweet (or was this on the blog? – though I think it was a tweet) where he accused her of molesting kids, or something of that nature.

    Frank. Don’t give Freds a bad name…. He pretended to make an accusation of necrophilia to defend his friend Tom (who was in jail) against accusations that he might have done something wrong. Seeee any buddy can accuse anubiddy of anything an’ you can’t prove you didn’t do it can you can you huh huh huh? The difference is that Patrick apologized and lost his position, whereas Frank was unapologetic, stopped tweetering, and otherwise suffered no consequences.

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  97. truthseeker00,

    Oh man, preach it! I heard those very words and left seven years ago. I won’t lie and say it has been the most wonderfully giddy experience of freedom but it has been one of the best decisions of my life. I have struggled to think differently, to learn Truth, to see the world through a clear lense. The institutional church is not of God. Trying to cling to it and “change” it will not happen. The only answer is to walk away. Our faith is in Jesus Christ, a person, not some group of people who worship a hierarchy in an organization made by men.

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  98. truthseeker00:
    It simply seems to me that The Church as we know it IS the problem. I know this thought is not unique; countless gave their lives in the sixteenth century in the quest to leave the ‘official’ church and have the sort of home-based, non-hierarchical, non-authoritarian gathering extolled by Jesus and his apostles.

    But it seems that for centuries we have been brainwashed into believing that God’s children must be part of an authoritarian, hierarchical institution, which of course necessitates authoritarian rulers and people to rule over.

    There is no justification in scripture for The Church as we know it. Period. Perhaps now is the time, finally, for people to begin to understand this. God has never called, or been pleased with self-claimed church officials who seek to control what believers think, believe, say and do.

    It is not ‘just’ complementarianism – that is simply par for the course. Perhaps it is time that the naive, oppressed sheep learn, once and for all that The Church and The Body of Christ are two distinct entities. In many cases, nearly mutually exclusive. We have only one true shepherd, and he did not organize an institution of powerful undershepherds to ‘rule’ in his stead.

    Maybe God is rising up to teach his people that ‘doing church’ is not what following him is about, in spite of the claims of those who benefit personally from the existence of the Institutional Church.

    I know, I know; I can look back not too far and see the day in which I would have, without the slightest doubt, condemned all who did not regularly attend church as godless and disobedient. Now, I cannot help but wonder if God is not calling me, and others to ‘Come out of her, my people’.

    I am afraid that the ‘institution’ of The Church is no different than all of the other institutions of men. Designed by self-seeking narcissists to benefit themselves at the cost of those they seek to fleece. Abuse is necessary to intimidate and control. It turns the abusers into desperate criminals who dig themselves in deeper and deeper, and the abused into traumatized victims incapable of functioning without assistance. In other words, it creates the wounded that provide job security for the ‘healers’.

    I wish I was merely being cynical, but I am afraid I am deadly serious. If I haven’t tried them all, I have come pretty close, and at the end of the day, it is always the same story. A charismatic guy mouths nice-sounding words, only to lead to the eventual discovery that it is all about him, rather than those who he is supposed to be willing to lay down his life for.

    Satan is very, very clever, and once he begins to persuade the religious ‘leaders’ that their job is to protect the institution rather than the sheep, even the most well-meaning are destined for ruin. How many times have I heard the story of how ‘Our church went south. The pastor became a different person’ and so on. The Institution IS the problem, not a few bad apples rolling around within.

    you repeat the thoughts of myself and other generations in my family right now. my son wrote me a letter saying almost this exact same thing two weeks ago. makes you wonder.

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  99. FW Rez: I am confident that the next president will be a PP insider.

    I’m thinking it might be longtime Patterson flunky Thomas White, president since 2013 of Cedarville University.

    http://www.bpnews.net/40455/cedarville-calls-swbts-white-as-president

    “Southwestern President Paige Patterson, who recently rejoined the Cedarville board of trustees, described White as a ‘precious friend’ and a ‘humble, courageous, brilliant prophet of God.'”

    “‘Cedarville will expand its influence and impact under his leadership,’ Patterson said in announcing White’s resignation from Southwestern, where he also was a systematic theology professor and held other posts. ‘Few have ever been more prepared for the task.'”

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  100. Jerome: I’m thinking it might be longtime Patterson flunky Thomas White, president since 2013 of Cedarville University.

    I don’t think it will be a non-Calvinist. I am fairly certain Patterson still believes he has control over that, but the way the New Cals deceptively seed groups, some of the trustees might still be unannounced New Cals who are voting to go along with PP until the new president is announced. That’s right from their church takeover playbook.

    I bet my favorite hat the new president will be a New Cal, with my guess being Danny Akin.

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  101. Glad to see Dee, Julie Ann, and others tweeting about Mohler’s article. His article reminded me of Piper’s “this is God’s judgement” nonsense. These guys blast Rome for allowing the Pope to speak ex cathedral. The pope has done it less than 10 times in 2000 years. Evangelical celebrities do it daily.

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  102. truthseeker00,

    Re: the (institutional) Church IS the problem:

    For more than a decade I have had the sense that the institutional Church is, most of the time, another arena for the pursuit of the same kinds of agendas that are pursued in every other arena: money, power … and even sex.

    When this is combined with the separatist tendencies, it ironically inverts Jesus’ saying, so that there are churches that are, to the degree they can separate, not “in” the world, but in the character of their internal relational and power dynamics are very much “of” it.

    It ought not to be this way, and I’m sure that there many places where it isn’t. Such places don’t draw attention to themselves. There’s a famous saying in economics that “bad money drives out good”; a similar principle seems to operate in business and I suspect that it’s true in the leadership of every kind of institution. It’s an argument in favor of staying numerically small and “flat” in terms of the depth of the power relations.

    I have read that millions of Evangelicals are giving up on institutional church, and I don’t blame them. I hope that something better emerges from the wreckage.

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  103. XianJaneway:
    Lea,

    I spoke to my Lead Pastor about leaving the SBC, and he said, “We haven’t given money to the national convention in well over a decade. We give a *tiny* amount of money to the state convention, but the majority of our missions fund goes to [name of the large project we support regularly].”

    I was surprised, because my reaction was,” I don’t want my church associated w/these people!” But as long as the $$ wasn’t funding them, the leadership doesn’t seem to worry about it. Yet.

    Interesting. As I said I kind of get that, up and until the SBC name gets so toxic that you no longer wish to be associated. Or until they kick you out for various reasons. My old church (from childhood) ended up getting kicked out, but long after I left.

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  104. I posted this elsewhere, but it’s important contrast:

    “Early Wednesday morning, trustees officially removed Patterson from leadership and released a statement regarding his status.

    Yet, according to The Washington Post, SWBTS has provided him with a lucrative compensation package that includes housing accommodation on campus and the titles ‘theologian-in-residence’ and ‘president emeritus.'”

    vs

    “During their annual meeting, trustees gave Dilday a vote of confidence as seminary president. However, the next day those same trustees voted to fire Dilday for not offering enough support for a fundamentalist takeover of the Southern Baptist Convention.

    As they voted to fire Dilday, they locked the doors of his office, escorted him to the president’s house with armed guards, and prohibited him from walking anywhere on campus.”

    https://www.baptiststandard.com/opinion/other-opinions/tale-of-two-presidents-at-southwestern-baptist-theological-seminary/

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  105. truthseeker00: Satan is very, very clever, and once he begins to persuade the religious ‘leaders’ that their job is to protect the institution rather than the sheep, even the most well-meaning are destined for ruin

    This takes away personal responsibility if we blame it on the devil. These men are exercising free will. Devil just needs to sit back and dial it in. Easy peasy. People are perfectly capable of evil without him.

    And only people can stop it continuing, if they want to.

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  106. Samuel Conner: … the institutional Church is, most of the time, another arena for the pursuit of the same kinds of agendas that are pursued in every other arena: money, power … and even sex.

    … there are churches that are, to the degree they can separate, not “in” the world, but in the character of their internal relational and power dynamics are very much “of” it.

    Back to the drawing board, er… what is the God-plan of gathering together and doing church. As you point out, certainly not power, sex, and money. Surely, the gifts of the Holy Spirit are essential to the community: love, joy, peace… And the gifts of the Holy Spirit to being the church: prophecy, service, teaching, exhortation, giving, leadership, mercy, wisdom, knowledge, faith, healing, miracles, discernment, languages, interpretation, apostles, evangelists, pastors.

    So the pastor is there, but not the star of the show (God, Jesus, H.S.). The pastor is not “running things” as there is an administration gift. The pastor is also under the scrutiny of those gifted with discernment. These gifts raise the bar in the church community.

    There is no mention of brick and mortar in the NT, is there? Higher education, yes, but seminaries? How did they even manage back then without our religious institutions?

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  107. Samuel Conner: For more than a decade I have had the sense that the institutional Church is, most of the time, another arena for the pursuit of the same kinds of agendas that are pursued in every other arena: money, power … and even sex.

    I think it’s important to remember that ultimately, your church is made up of people. People with the same flaws and inclinations and yes, sins, of anywhere else.

    This is why it’s important to be very intentional about how you protect your church and the people in it. This comes into place in polity, yes, but also at every level and in how you think about people. If you find problems, you have to address them. If you let them fester…well, you get this mess.

    I’m not in the dump church entirely camp, although I don’t fault anyone who is. A certain amount of structure is necessary simply for organization, particularly if your group is larger. (and small churches and house churches are prone to their own problems). The important thing is to pay attention, and if something isn’t healthy either try to change it or leave.

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  108. Max,

    A few evenings ago I was putting my 4-year old granddaughter to bed and she asked for ‘Thank you, Jesus…” So we sang it together, she whispering the lines to me as we went along in case I forgot them. ‘Thank you, Jesus, thank you, Jesus. You went to Calvary, and there you died for me. Thank you. Jesus, for loving me.” In the end our salvation rests on the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, and not on power hungry, hierarchical men. We have the right in Christ to seek out the truth in the Scriptures for ourselves, always heeding those who have gone before us, but weighing everything soberly and carefully. It seems much sin has resulted in the church from complementarian doctrine, either from the Calvinist or Arminian camp, and we must call it out, while not becoming despondent (as I often am) but remaining thankful for all the the Lord Jesus has done, is doing and will do. As a conservative evangelical Baptist egalitarian I find there are many ideas swirling around and indeed held by the majority of evangelicals that I find myself the odd ball on many occasions. So it is good to go back to Thank you, Jesus.

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  109. XianJaneway: I was surprised, because my reaction was,” I don’t want my church associated w/these people!”

    I have mostly been thinking of issues with Baptists related to treatment of women, LGBT etc. But the first thing my bf said was they opposed interracial marriage. Which I didn’t see, but I wouldn’t want to be associated with either.

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  110. Steve: So why should your church stay in the SBC? Ask your pastor this question.

    A relative attends a local mini-mega church. They are officially SBC, but the word “baptist” is nowhere to be seen. Apparently, the main reason they stay SBC is because of the cost of staff medical insurance and the pastoral retirement plan.

    Heck, I might join the SBC if it meant affordable medical insurance. [And I don’t want to start new tangent.]

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  111. So, is the destitute state of the association and entities the unspoken third rail? It is sure starting to sound like it.
    “I don’t want my local church associated with those people…”
    “We haven’t given in years…”
    “We only stay “Baptist” for the insurance an retirement…”

    If local ministers and staffs don’t want to get involved (and are not having “family talks” with their congregations), is it any wonder that there is such mission drift, old boy networking, isolation, power consolidation and corruption in the entities?

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  112. GSD [Getting Stuff Done]: Apparently, the main reason they stay SBC is because of the cost of staff medical insurance and the pastoral retirement plan.

    Of course, they could save even more if they went to the more biblical approach of an all volunteer body, with no salaries or retirement plans. Anyone who thinks such things don’t matter to pastors, has their eyes wide shut. I recall being surprised when my former pastor (not SBC) announced a goal of 5 new member families for the year. Just seemed sort of random, which he never was. Later, his wife mentioned that we needed that to keep up their salary. Talk about disillusioned. Yet, I convinced myself I was reading too much into it, until the pastor admitted that there was certain ‘truth’ he wouldn’t share from the pulpit, because it would drive too many away. It had honestly never entered my mind that pastors could be so concerned about the dollars.

    What I am trying to point out is how insidious this is – they were not even trying to hide it. The whole institutional system – of all sorts – is mostly a trap, luring people in with various benefits until the benefits become more important than the supposed goals of the institution. So important that people are willing to look the other way when everything is not quite ‘right’. Do you think Jesus was the first one to notice the corruption of the moneychangers? No, just the first one willing to upset the applecart, er, tables.

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  113. Think about the entitlement programs, which are devised more to create loyal voters than to actually assist anyone to escape poverty. Institutions do not seek to put themselves – that is the people who run them – out of business. The institution is their bread and butter. It almost inevitably becomes second nature to defend the institution at all costs – even if it is failing miserably at achieving its supposed goals.

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  114. Grainne: In the end our salvation rests on the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, and not on power hungry, hierarchical men. We have the right in Christ to seek out the truth in the Scriptures for ourselves, always heeding those who have gone before us, but weighing everything soberly and carefully. It seems much sin has resulted in the church from complementarian doctrine, either from the Calvinist or Arminian camp, and we must call it out, while not becoming despondent (as I often am) but remaining thankful for all the the Lord Jesus has done, is doing and will do. As a conservative evangelical Baptist egalitarian I find there are many ideas swirling around and indeed held by the majority of evangelicals that I find myself the odd ball on many occasions. So it is good to go back to Thank you, Jesus.

    Grainne, your words are worth repeating.

    From one odd ball to another, Scripture said we would be a “peculiar” people! Have a great Memorial Day weekend!

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  115. truthseeker00: Of course, they could save even more if they went to the more biblical approach of an all volunteer body, with no salaries or retirement plans.

    Through the Holy Spirit God has gifted the church, including the gift of finance for funding projects or leadership for leading – but these are gifts, free: “natural ability or talent endowed without compensation or payment”. The funding gift was not meant to pay for the leadership gift, who of course must be the pastor so he can run things his way. (SBC would be a “he”.)

    It’s a twisted system the way it’s functioning now.

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  116. FW Rez: There was some debate that the song’s (“In the Garden”) focus was too personal.

    Have you ever heard a New Calvinist give testimony about a “personal” relationship with Christ? I have found there to be a mistrust of personal experience by that tribe. They prefer to think of Christianity in terms of doctrinal propositions rather a personal encounter with the living Christ. When the New Calvinist bubble breaks (it will), the confused and disillusioned from the reformed movement will pose one of the greatest mission fields on the planet for the true Gospel. I’m praying now that God will raise up evangelists who will get their attention.

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  117. Max: They prefer to think of Christianity in terms of doctrinal propositions rather a personal encounter with the living Christ.

    It’s headwork, never heartwork.
    Yet God is love.

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  118. truthseeker00: ‘institution’

    Your words are right on target. I could have preached that same sermon!

    Jesus came to redeem and work through individuals, not institutions! The institution we call “church” is OK if it is reaching a lost world for Christ, equipping disciples to do the work of the ministry (ALL of them), and engaging the whole Body of Christ to fulfill the Great Commission together. Anything less than that is “doing church” without God.

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  119. Max: Have you ever heard a New Calvinist give testimony about a “personal” relationship with Christ?I have found there to be a mistrust of personal experience by that tribe.They prefer to think of Christianity in terms of doctrinal propositions rather a personal encounter with the living Christ.When the New Calvinist bubble breaks (it will), the confused and disillusioned from the reformed movement will pose one of the greatest mission fields on the planet for the true Gospel.I’m praying now that God will raise up evangelists who will get their attention.

    I think that even among older school Reformed (it was certainly the case among the leaders of the group that I was on the periphery of for a while) there is a sense that it is sound doctrine that is what saves a person. They tend to be very concerned that people not imagine that they contribute anything to their redemption. (I get the sense from the group I was in that the danger of relying on one’s good works was so feared that it was thought better to not publicly encourage to good works at all.) There was a strong emphasis on Christ as our substitute and a significant de-emphasis on Christ as our example. A wise old PCA minister told me that this arose among conservative Reformed in reaction to the emphasis on Christ’s example of service by “social gospel” types during the early 20th century.

    Whatever the cause, one of the consequences seems to be that doctrine has become arguably the most important test of good character in candidates for ordination. It’s not that hard to master the Reformed system well enough to satisfy an ordination committee. So young people who have not yet proved what kind of people they are can be hastily ordained to lead congregations, and all in perfectly good order by denominational standards.

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  120. Max: They prefer to think of Christianity in terms of doctrinal propositions rather a personal encounter with the living Christ.

    AKA “Christ” is nothing more than a pen-twirling intellectual debate abstraction.

    Though I have experienced those who go overboard on the “personal encounter” angle to the exclusion of everything else. It leads to a Gospel of Personal Salvation and ONLY Personal Salvation and a totally atomistic “church” of Personal Salvations in their bubble like smartphone zombies.

    When the New Calvinist bubble breaks (it will), the confused and disillusioned from the reformed movement will pose one of the greatest mission fields on the planet for the true Gospel.

    Assuming they haven’t been vaccinated into a total rejection of anything to do with God or Christ.

    Remember the idea behind vaccination: Expose the organism to a weakened or fake version of a pathogen; when they are exposed to the REAL thing, their immune system will automatically REJECT it.

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  121. truthseeker00: Think about the entitlement programs, which are devised more to create loyal voters than to actually assist anyone to escape poverty.

    Clear back to Plunkett of Tammany Hall.

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  122. Max: Agreed.We need these guy’s women to stand up and tell their sorry husbands/boyfriends to sit down and shut up for a change!

    But that wouldn’t be Winsome!
    (Stay Sweet… Stay Sweet…)

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  123. Daisy: If a victim does step forward, he or she is dragged through the mud, so that other victims see this,and they are reluctant to step forward in other cases.

    Make an Example of one, and a thousand will fall into line bleating your praises.

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  124. Samuel Conner: there is a sense that it is sound doctrine that is what saves a person

    Doctrines about grace can never substitute for a direct experience of Grace, an encounter with the living Christ. I fear that so many young folks in the reformed movement just don’t get it. When their pastors talk more about “God” than they do Jesus, how will they? When Calvinism is presented as THE gospel, they can go to church all their life and miss salvation in Christ. When they rest as being among the chosen few because of adherence to doctrines about grace, they could very well miss the offer of Grace which will save their souls.

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  125. jyjames: The very image. HUG, you have a way with words.

    I’ve beenon the receiving end of a secular equivalent: Global Thermonuclear War as a pen-twirling intellectual abstraction.
    “Only a Three-point-Seven Gigadeath Situation. Insiginificant.”

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  126. Back to the blog title … Whew! I don’t think there is enough lipstick in America to slap on all the SBC gorillas that are out there! If there was ever a need for a genuine revival by a denominational group of people, it would be the SBC! If there was ever a time when it was most desperately needed, it would be NOW!

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  127. Max:
    Back to the blog title … Whew!I don’t think there is enough lipstick in America to slap on all the SBC gorillas that are out there!If there was ever a need for a genuine revival by a denominational group of people, it would be the SBC!If there was ever a time when it was most desperately needed, it would be NOW!

    These gorillas are definitely not an endangered species. Open season???

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  128. Samuel Conner: (I get the sense from the group I was in that the danger of relying on one’s good works was so feared that it was thought better to not publicly encourage to good works at all.)

    Goodness! I haven’t found this to be the case at all in my (reformed) denom.

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  129. From Twitter:

    @Wade_Burleson

    1. The 2003 rape victim has been certified as a messenger by her SBC church. 2. She and her husband are prayerfully considering if she should make the first motion at the SBC involving SBC business. It would mean no more anonymity. #SBCAM18 #Courage #ChurchToo #SWBTS #StayTuned

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  130. Lea:
    Wow. That would be brave. God Bless.

    Very brave. We should all pray for her safety and that her message gets through.

    I am worried that they will try to shout her down and the rule about being removed for interrupting a motion will not be enforced.

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  131. Where does the bible say for by grace are you saved through doctrine? Wait, I found it, right before the sentence where it says by grace are you saved through experience. So is it a choice or is it a combo?

    And what if I no longer believe all the doctrines which I have previously believed? Does that mean that I am not really ‘saved’? Not only that, what if I no longer experience anything at all remotely-just nothing. What does that mean? Is experience like immunizations where one might do the trick or maybe there need to be boosters, and if so how many boosters and how often? And when can I quit worrying about it?

    No wonder we have so many people who pursue more and more doctrinal purity. And no wonder we have so many people who pursue more and more assurances of experience either with one more trip to the altar or one more supernatural evidence. Does God, not kidding, treat people like that? Or is it just people pursuing the wrong ideas and driving themselves to distraction in the process?

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  132. okrapod: Where does the bible say for by grace are you saved through doctrine?

    Right after the one about how a husband gets a ‘tie breaker’ vote. And maybe before no dancing.

    okrapod: No wonder we have so many people who pursue more and more doctrinal purity. And no wonder we have so many people who pursue more and more assurances of experience either with one more trip to the altar or one more supernatural evidence. Does God, not kidding, treat people like that? Or is it just people pursuing the wrong ideas and driving themselves to distraction in the process?

    I think some people are just really really uncomfortable with uncertainty, with the idea that we may not have every answer, with anything that isn’t spelled out exactly. I feel like that is the root of some of this, people are trying to convince themselves that they are covered, and they double down and go crazy trying to convince everyone else and enforce it. I’m not wired that way, I guess.

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  133. Lea: Goodness! I haven’t found this to be the case at all in my (reformed) denom.

    “goodness!” indeed. My understanding is that the point of periodic gatherings of believers is to encourage one another to love and good deeds. This group’s meetings seemed primarily aimed at ensuring that none of the enrolled members fall into the lake of fire. Outsiders were welcome to come in if God so moved them, but He didn’t seem to move very many.

    There are evidently different flavors of conservative Reformedness. This group’s flavor is not healthy, and indeed its regional Presbytery is also in trouble. I’m glad to hear that there are healthier flavors out there.

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  134. GSD [Getting Stuff Done]: ’t want to start new tangent.]

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    This is a legitimate reason, and a real need. 🙁
    We get the annual financial report for our church, and we know exactly how much money goes to pay the staff, the utilities, etc.

    If this is connected to insurance, etc., then I don’t mind staying until we find a better solution.

    It ticks me off that this would even need to be an issue in the 21st century, but it’s one more reason to vote.

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  135. Samuel Conner: conservative Reformedness

    Ah, I didn’t’ realize you were talking only about conservative reformed.

    Of course, Al Mohler says the CR was totes cool even though it led to moral collapse because at least they aren’t liberals!

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  136. ishy,

    I hate referring to this lady as a victim. Sure, she was victimized X 2, and brutally so. I have no doubt that these past few days have been torturous for her and her family. Yet she has so much courage, such a backbone…….. In my eyes, she is a victor, not still a victim.

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  137. “When the New Calvinist bubble breaks (it will), the confused and disillusioned from the reformed movement will pose one of the greatest mission fields on the planet for the true Gospel.”

    “Assuming they haven’t been vaccinated into a total rejection of anything to do with God or Christ.”

    More like a new burned over district, adding to the ranks of the ‘nones’ and the ‘dones’.

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  138. Daisy,

    Muslin, fka Dee Holmes,

    Nick Bulbeck,

    I’m saying that talking about caring about women seems to be the new trend to get behind as a wise career move. Paige Patterson’s comments about divorce and abuse are mainstream principles among neoCals, repeated by John Piper (endure abuse for a season), and enforced by every membership contract.

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  139. truthseeker00,

    “The whole institutional system – of all sorts – is mostly a trap, luring people in with various benefits until the benefits become more important than the supposed goals of the institution. So important that people are willing to look the other way when everything is not quite ‘right’”
    +++++++++++++++++++

    i’ve run this through my logic-o-meter many times. i always end up with this:

    the ultimate mission of the church is to perpetuate itself.

    it would be rare professional christian who would give up things with $, prestige, and reputation attached for the cause of what is right, true, moral, honest, good.

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  140. Excellent blog by Dawn Choate, posted today at Christians for Biblical Equality:

    https://www.cbeinternational.org/blogs/paige-patterson-swbts-and-problem-sorry-not-sorry

    An excerpt:
    “But when the doors were finally opened and the decision was handed down, there still were no correctives. The time for silence is over. For women who have been told by the Baptists and other evangelical churches for decades to “be silent” in so many areas of church and home life, the time for quietness has come to an end. The time has come to shine a glaring light on the hypocrisy, inherent danger, and ultimate failure of a doctrine that silences the voices of our sisters in Christ, and ultimately harms us all.”

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  141. __

    Page Patterson career disclaimer: “If one of our 501c3 religious products or recommended venders burnt down your house, your neighborhood, or destroyed your entire religious world, it was my responsibility…”

    ;~)

    – –

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  142. I just tweeted this to Dee:
    But he’s a complementarian & doesn’t believe in women in leadership.

    JD Greear Calls on SBC to Better Include Women in Leadership, Recommit to Exposing Abuse
    https://www.christianpost.com/news/jd-greear-calls-on-sbc-to-better-include-women-in-leadership-recommit-to-exposing-abuse-224372/

    Despite calling for more female leadership, Greear echoed comments he made earlier this month in support for complementarianism, which states that men and women have distinct roles in church and the home.

    As long as he and other Christians refuse to reject complementarianism, they’re never, ever going to be able to root out the problems they’re having, where you have churches covering up the abuse of women, or pastors telling women to stay in abusive marriages, etc.

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  143. I walked through the new Mathena Hall on SWBTS campus when I stopped by there yesterday. It was late in the afternoon, but there was still a lot of activity for early summer (but no moving van outside Pecan Manor). While Baptist Blogger has already noted the contrast between the humble abode of Lottie Moon and the hacienda style building going up to serve as residence to the Pattersons, there were two things struck me.

    One was the Martyrs’ Walk. It is a sobering reminder of those that have been killed while serving. Arches around the north and east side of the building frame plaques that give the name, location, and dates as well as citing how each was killed. It is very well done. Some of the incidents I recalled from when they were in the news. Some very faith-filled and faithful people have gone before us.

    The other was the demeanor of the students. I had intentionally parked off campus and was looking over my shoulder when on the property, fully expecting security to challenge my being there (I made sure I was on public property when taking pictures of the new hacienda). Instead, every student I saw greeted me with a pleasant smile. While I entered the building feeling out of place I was quickly made to feel welcome. I am hopeful for these young people and the changes their generation will bring to the SBC. They deserve our prayers and encouragement.

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  144. XianJaneway,

    “you, Amy, myself, and basically every other SBC woman who cares have talked about Paige Patterson for *years*, but ppl only cared when Jonathan Merritt brought it up. Obviously, the word of multiple former and current SBC women wasn’t enough–a man had to validate it.”
    ++++++++++++++++++++++

    the experience of being invisible…

    i mean, i always thought it would be fun to have that super power.

    it’s not fun.

    demoralizing is not a strong enough word.

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  145. Three thoughts on “institutions” in general that are probably relevant to the challenges of how to “be the church”

    * Eric Hoffer’s famous dictum that “Every great cause starts as a movement, turns into a business and eventually degenerates into a racket”. This does seem to be the general trajectory.

    * The “Iron Law of Institutions”: office-holders in institutions tend to be more concerned with enlarging their own power within the institution than they concerned with the health of the institution or the fulfillment of the mission of the institution. I think it is not hard to see this dynamic in recent and ancient church history

    * the reality of sociopathy: (per Martha Stout’s “The Sociopath Next Door”) it appears that about 4% of the population is seriously deficient in the innate human capacities of conscience and empathy. These people can be very intelligent, articulate, charming, etc. This personality type tends to be over-represented in the upper reaches of powerful institutions.

    Put those three together and it perhaps is not so surprising that the present-day church is in the state it is. Item #3 might be ameliorated by refusing to ordain or promote people who were not very well known by the flock (or the institutional subordinates, as the case may be) that they would lead. If you could avoid #3, it might lessen the severity of problems #2 and #1.

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  146. Daisy: JD Greear Calls on SBC to Better Include Women in Leadership, Recommit to Exposing Abuse

    Greear is giving the appearance of being on the high road with propaganda before the SBC-Dallas vote in June, where he is running for SBC President. He hasn’t called on SBC to include women in leadership in the past.

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  147. I’m confused by how much power this guy seems to have, since I thought Baptists didn’t have a denominational hierarchy. Is he the de facto SBC Sorta-Pope?

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  148. majj27:
    I’m confused by how much power this guy seems to have, since I thought Baptists didn’t have a denominational hierarchy. Is he the de facto SBC Sorta-Pope?

    He was sorta the old SBC “pope” and probably still imagines himself so. Albert Mohler is the current one. Mohler gained that much power by putting all his cronies in the institutional top spots. SWBTS is one of the only institutions left that doesn’t have a Mohlerite in the top spot.

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  149. ishy: He was sorta the old SBC “pope” and probably still imagines himself so. Albert Mohler is the current one.

    Yes, Paige Patterson wielded tremendous power as “pope” of SBC’s Conservative Resurgence. He was dethroned by Al Mohler, the current “pope”, when the Conservative Resurgence merged into a Calvinist Resurgence. The SBC has been just one big theo-political drama for years, where little people with little character play roles on a big stage.

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  150. Even though he maintains a semblance of authority and will have a cushy home he will still be embarrassed that he was exposed to the secular world.

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  151. Samuel Conner,

    Well said.

    All the more reason for the business of the church to be rendered by the Holy Spirit.
    With the offices maintained by Holy Spirit gifts, and characters of Holy Spirit fruit.
    The fruit of the Holy Spirit fully exudes empathy (love, patience, kindness, gentleness) and conscience (self-control, faithfulness, goodness), with joy and peace.

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  152. Also of interest (from the same site) – says it’s an updated post from 2007:

    Should egalitarians be fought as enemies of the gospel?
    https://mmoutreach.org/wim/2017/06/28/egalitarians-fought-as-enemies-of-the-gospel/

    CBMW (the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood) posted audio tapes from Different By Design conference held in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 2007.

    I was amazed at the way that they connected the gospel to the gender issue in such a way that they charged those who do not hold to patriarchy and male-only leadership with not holding to the gospel. I would like to present some audio clips from the first tape by Russell Moore in this post and reflect on his comments.

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  153. Daisy,

    Thanks for linking that and highlighting Moore’s words.

    His tweet the other day bothered me – it comes off as fake and opportunistic when he has historically and consistently taught and enabled the opposite environment in the SBC. There’s so much dissonance with him that I never trust what he’s saying.

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  154. It’s one thing to progress or change views (as we all do) throughout the course of time, but they don’t acknowledge their past views or seem to engage in self-reflection and explanation of how they are saying this now when they used to say this.

    It’s all the erasing the past, ignoring what was said and done before, not qualifying, not comparing and contrasting old vs new and one’s role and part in the past…an overall lack of acknowledgement that to me comes off as untrustworthy and suspect.

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  155. Daisy,

    The Richard and Cheryl Schatz Ministries are outstanding. Clarity on all fronts, not only for cults but for Christians veering off course. Discipleship is refining of our faith and this strongly collaborative couple provides high quality tools to that end. God bless them.

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  156. jyjames: Clarity on all fronts, not only for cults but for Christians veering off course.

    I agree with much of what Cheryl Schatz has come up with.
    Her research and reasoning are impeccable with regard to what the Bible says and what it does not say about gender.
    But Man-0-Manischewitz the Schatz’s could take me to task for what I disbelieve.

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  157. Max: Yes, Paige Patterson wielded tremendous power as “pope” of SBC’s Conservative Resurgence.

    Probably claiming more Infallibility, Keys to the Kingdom, and Spiritual Authority Ex Cathedra than any REAL Pope has ever claimed.

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  158. Lea: Of course, Al Mohler says the CR was totes cool even though it led to moral collapse because at least they aren’t liberals!

    i.e. Their Ideology is Pure and Correct, Comrades.

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  159. Daisy,

    Oh yeah, JD Greear, one of those Mark Driscoll fan boys.

    https://jdgreear.com/blog/mark-driscoll-and-the-nyt/

    They have such a warped concept of what leadership is. Any of us can post on social media about how our denominations need to do X to achieve near universally favorable goal Y. He’s about to be the SBC President, and he can tell us about a plan. His friend Beth Moore says the “women can totally use their gifts as long as they don’t usurp male authority” isn’t working

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  160. Daisy: I would like to present some audio clips from the first tape by Russell Moore in this post and reflect on his comments.

    I would love to hear Russell Moore talking about what he said before, and how it relates to what he said now, and if he has changed his mind on anything and why. I think it’s past time for him to confront this stuff.

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  161. truthseeker00,

    I am struggling with this myself. My father is a Southern Baptist pastor; pastor in the real sense of the word (unlike these “thou shalt not touch me” megachurch pastors) who would never condone sexual abuse in the church. My husband and I have been in the SBC and even ventured outside of that denomination to try others. In one church we were told we were “tything units”; in another we were told from the pulpit that children were not welcome in the service; in another one family (especially the controlling wife- yes, there are those) made it unbearable. Church has always been an important part of our lives, but I am getting to the point of not even wanting to go which is a huge step for me. My family will think I’m a heathen, and I will probably feel like it since church is so ingrained in me. But, the thought of my money going to support the ” business” turns my stomach. I’ve always known the SBC hierarchy can not be trusted due to the way my dad had been treated as a non-uppity up. Sigh…..just don’t know what to do. Hubby feels the same.

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  162. Godbeforemen,

    But, the thought of my money going to support the ” business” turns my stomach.

    I think it’s deteriorated beyond “business” to “racket”.

    I’ve always known the SBC hierarchy can not be trusted due to the way my dad had been treated as a non-uppity up. Sigh…..just don’t know what to do. Hubby feels the same.

    You join all the others Walking Away from Omelas.

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  163. Max: Paige Patterson wielded tremendous power as “pope” of SBC’s Conservative Resurgence. He was dethroned by Al Mohler, the current “pope”, when the Conservative Resurgence merged into a Calvinist Resurgence. The SBC has been just one big theo-political drama for years, where little people with little character play roles on a big stage.

    “A cold Iron Throne
    Holds a boy barely grown;
    His crown based on lies,
    You Win or You Die…”

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