fight update status

For anybody interested in the status of the current internecine warfare in the SBC between Calvinists and Anti-Calvinists, Timmy has a chronological timeline with links. For those of you that don’t care, don’t click.

It is fascinating to me to see the approach to conflict on display here. It is also fascinating to me to see that the attitudes that I experienced at a local SBC church (which caused me to leave that fellowship) are apparently convention wide. The requirement that people be Baptist first completely ran me out. Anytime the fuss is over various confessions of faith; their meaning and application rather than the Bible’s meaning and application, then I believe we are wasting time.

Specifically, check out this item from Malcolm Yarnell in response to Tom Ascol. (you will recall that Malcolm and Tom interacted extensively in the comments to this blog post by Tom.)

2. As a result of his repeated unwillingness to answer a specific question regarding his church’s communion with a Presbyterian, many will be led to the unfortunate conclusion that Dr. Ascol is not willing to affirm the Baptist Faith and Message in its entirety. Let it be clearly noted that communion with Presbyterians is certainly within the prerogative of Dr. Ascol’s local church as a free church. However, communion with Presbyterians is outside Southern Baptist orthodoxy, at least according to the common confession of the Southern Baptist Convention. A reading of articles 6-7, especially the first paragraph of article 7, of the Baptist Faith and Message 2000 will demonstrate how communion with Presbyterians is outside the confessional mainstream of Southern Baptist life.

Do you get that? Do you see where the emphasis is? is it on scripture? Or is it on a man made document?

Now check out this paragraph from James White in response to Dr. Yarnell.

I note also a very fascinating exchange taking place in the comments on Tom Ascol’s last blog entry, found here. Malcom [sic] Yarnell scares me. Evidently, if I find my Presbyeterian brothers to be co-laborers in the kingdom, firm believers in the gospel of grace, compatriots in the battle against the powers of darkness and brothers in their passion for the freedom of God in salvation and the glory of Christ as Savior and Mediator, I’m just not quite “Baptist” enough for him. Of course, I also ran across this comment from him that made my head spin: “In response, please note that I consider the Roman Catholic church in the same way I do Lutheran and Presbyterian churches, although I do prefer the latter’s doctrines in some ways: the churches hold to innovations that countermand the New Testament, and thus may be classified as sub-New Testament.” – Malcolm.” “Prefer the latter’s doctrines in some ways”???? I am simply left without words at such a statement. Amazing, just amazing.

emphasis added

Now, James White might be a little too disputatious and pugnacious for some, but doesn’t he have a point here? shouldn’t we be keeping our eye on a little larger ball than staying within “the confessional mainstream of Southern Baptist life” or “Southern Baptist orthodoxy”? Shouldn’t we be a bit more focused on the Kingdom of Heaven? Shouldn’t we be more focused on the core issues that unite us rather than secondary issues upon which we have differences?

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2 Responses

  1. It’s a good thing that SBC’ers are not credalists!

  2. indeed. indeed. and well said, Thomas. I hope you don’t mind, but I put your blog’s address under your name above.

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