31 May 2005

Conservative Resurgence

Al Mohler in his commentary today wrote about a first hand account of the conservative resurgence in the Southern Baptist Convention. He reviewed Anatomy of a Reformation: The Southern Baptist Convention 1978-2004 written by Paige Patterson. Dr. Patterson is one of the chief architects of the conservative resurgence that began in 1978/79 and is now the president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.

I have not read a great deal about this era in Southern Baptist life, but know a couple of professors who recommended books for me to read. I'll probably get this booklet and begin studying history so I don't unknowingly contribute to making the same type of mistakes of the past. I know that this era in SB life has been very distressing for many.

I suppose that theological controversy will continue until we all stand before the Trinity and realize that none of us had it entirely correct. I hope that when controversy comes my way that I will be able to stand before God and give a good account of my actions, all the while knowing that it is by His grace that I stand in His presence anyway.

1 comment:

Howie Luvzus said...

I'm one of the "older guys" who had the privilege of having taken classes under some of the "liberals." Although I did not agree with all that they taught, I do know that the ones I had were committed to Christ and to Scripture.

I have found it difficult to get a "fair and balanced" view" of those turbulent years. I think that one of the biggest reasons that conservatives felt the need to formulate a "take over" is that so many of them were treated as ignorant hayseeds by SOME of the "liberals." I've seen Frank Stagg, God bless his soul, berate and humiliate students. I've heard that Dale Moody was even worse. After reading his work "Apostasy" it does seem he was a pretty sarcastic and bitter fellow.

On the other hand, I've found Patterson and Pressler's accounts to be over the top. The whole idea of describing those who disagree with you as rejecting the truthfulness of the Bible is really inexcusable.

Does the current leadership more accurately reflect the views of the typical Baptist in the pew? Yes. Is this a good thing? Yes. Is it bad to look upon those who have either moved on or been forced to move on as "heretics" and rejoice in their departure? Yes.

I'm not going to ask the Swift Boat guys to write a history of John Kerry any more than I'm going to ask Michael Moore to write a biography of President Bush.

Just a few thoughts from a guy who has had to learn to love a lot of folks I disagree with. It's hard, but with God's grace, I'll learn to love as Christ loves.