Tuesday, September 26, 2006

More on the Joshua Convergence (Updated)

You can now view the worship service of the Joshua Convergence where the affirmations were presented. The web link is http://www.alomachurch.org/joshua.wmv

One of the things I appreciated about this inaugural meeting was the spirit. I appreciated the openness, the honesty, and the Spirit of Christ expressed. Every meeting was an open meeting; in fact Joni Hannigan from the Florida Baptist Witness was present recording and taking notes of the meetings. I am glad this was done openly, no backroom politicking or planning, rather a statement: "this is who we are."

There appeared to be a sincere desire that all Southern Baptists see what the Joshua Convergence is and say, "We find unity here." Nevertheless, there seemed to be agreement that if some decide they don't have such unity with us, so be it, in the words of Martin Luther: "Here (We) Stand, (We) Can Do No Other."

Furthermore, be sure to check out www.joshuaconvergence.com from time to time. Men from across the convention will be posting articles related to the 7 affirmations.

Also, Pastor Mike, Tim Rogers, and Jeremy Green have all posted on the Joshua Convergence (http://pastormikehgbc.blogspot.com; http://southernbaptistinnc.blogspot.com; http://www.sbcpastor.blogspot.com)

BR

68 comments:

HarveyTheRabbitt said...

Brad,

I have been praying for you guys. I am truly thankful that the Lord is raising up a group of young pastors whose hearts are not sold out to politics like some of recent days. I know He will bless you all.

As you know I would have loved to have been there, but I am being tracked down by the liberals hitman CB, himself. He is close, so pray I make it through the night.

Harvey

HarveyTheRabbitt said...

Boys

The Rabbit Guy is history. I tracked him by his isp and he is no more.

Wade do not trouble yourself anymore. Get a good nights rest. What is my next assignment?

CBS

brad reynolds said...

Harvey
Thanks for your kind words.

And thanks for the humorous play between you and CB...sometimes we need that.

However, please don't initial CB's initials. I have already kicked off one cat for pretending to be another individual.

What's the deal with you critters?
BR

Les Puryear said...

Brad,

The Joshua Convergence has my unqualified support. If I may be of service in the effort, please let me know.

Regards,

Les (Old, but still kickin')

Jim said...

Brad,

I agreed with almost everything in the seven points. I guess you could call me a "six pointer" when it comes to the affirmations ;)

I was interested in the statement that "a redeemed life produces the fruit of the Spirit"

Isn't it the Spirit that produces the fruit, hence, "of the Spirit?" Forgive me if this is nitpicky, and I stand reproved if it is.

I'm sure you guys thought these things through, so I guess I'm just asking for some clarification. Thanks for your kindhearted spirit in the posts and comments.

Jim U.

ps. When I "dittoed" CH's question is was for clarification and not pointing to the alcohol issue.

Bro. Robin said...

Brad

I wish I was able to be there with you guys. Are there any other conferences planned in the future closer to the Oklahoma/Texas area? What about San Antonio?

God Bless

Bro. Robin

brad reynolds said...

Les
Thanks - will be in touch
BR

brad reynolds said...

Jim

Concerning the Fruit of the Spirit. I think the idea we were trying to express is that a true Christian will behave like a Christian…that if one is saved then the Spirit will work in him.

BR

brad reynolds said...

Robin
There was a lot of discussion today about avoiding the appearance of being another political group in the SBC. Ultimately, I think we conceded we have no control over how we are perceived but we do have control over why we do things. I think we do want to meet again in the future and will probably be working toward that end under the leadership of Dr. Rummage who was unanimously asked to serve as our coordinator. I foresee some future meetings but I believe they will be much like this one…a gathering for fellowship, prayer and expression of concern and care for the SBC.
BR

Jeremy Roberts said...

Brad -
I am so very thankful for you and your commitment to truth. My prayers are for you and the others present in central FL.

I wish I had heard about this earlier. I spoke with a whole group of sharp young guys here in DFW who are on board with the Joshua Convergence (myself included).

Stay strong.

brad reynolds said...

Jeremy
Thanks for your kind words. I truly think the Joshua Convergence can become a unifying catalyst with which an overwhelming majority of SB resonate.

Jerry Corbaley said...

Hi Brad,

Thanks for the proactive movement.

No rush, but can you email me at corbaley@sbcglobal.net?

Thanks

tk73bigdaddy said...

Dr. BR.... so is there no class tomm?

That is Wed. Sept 26th.

Bro. Robin said...

Brad

Thanks for specifying on the political group thing. I agree with you, that is not what we need. Appreciate your efforts.

God bless

Bro. Robin

SWBTS Underground said...

Mr. Reynolds,

Thank you for your passion for the purity of the SBC. The students I have queried about the Joshua Convergence seem to all play the same tune: they are personally for the things you stated, but are confused as to how far you will take the stance on alcohol and personal holiness. In this I see a split between the tending to traditionalists, and those who are increasingly apt to rely on the sufficiency of Scripture and the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

As you may guess, those that want to rely on the sufficiency of Scripture and the Holy Spirit are wary of any doctrinal control over the issue of drinking alcohol.

What is the stance the Joshua Convergence is taking in regards to this matter? In the future? And, what happened that made the JC even address the issue of alcohol?

sbc pastor said...

Brad,

I thoroughly enjoyed the Joshua Convergence. I believe that all of those who were a part of the meeting truly desire that the SBC continue the theological course set during the Conservative Resurgence. I, for one, have absolutely no desire to broaden the tent of SBC leadership to include those who cannot affirm the inerrancy of the Bible and the BF&M. This phrase pretty much sums it up:

BR: “There appeared to be a sincere desire that all Southern Baptists see what the Joshua Convergence is and say, "We find unity here." Nevertheless, there seemed to be agreement that if some decide they don't have such unity with us, so be it, in the words of Martin Luther: “Here (We) Stand, (We) Can Do No Other.’”

I must agree: “Here I Stand, I Can Do No Other.” Truly, the Battle for the Bible will never be over until the Lord Jesus returns. I like the way that Dr. Rummage put it (my paraphrase): If you think that this is an old man’s battle, before long it will be a young man’s battle (our children’s battle). Thanks and God bless!!!

In Christ,
JLG

brad reynolds said...

tk73bigdaddy
Of course there is class:)
BR

brad reynolds said...

swbts underground,

For those of us who hold to the authority and primacy of Scripture we feel quite confident that Scripture addresses alcohol. Please see my articles posted in July.

If some choose this is not where they are, then so be it. There will be no ill-will on our part...sadness and sorrow perhaps but no ill-will.

I can't speak for the others, but I desired to address alcohol because this was the first time in the history of our convention that a resolution on alcohol brought from the resolution committee (and I am grateful Dr. Frank Page and others brought this to the convention floor) was vehemently spoken against.
BR

Anonymous said...

Dr. Reynolds,

Greetings from Mississippi.

I have been reading Jeremy Greens blog concerning Rev. Burleson and his problems with the BF&M2K. Jeremy does not allow comments so I thought you might answer a question for me please.

If the IMB field personnel have to sign the BF&M2K, then why does a trustee like Wade get to sign it and then publically critize it? Am I missing something? Should not the trustees be held to the same standard as the rest of the IMB team?

I read on one of your blog comments that one pastor was considering placing an article in Rev. Berleson's town paper. At first I was appauled, but after reading his own blog and seeing the inconsistency of his theology and biblical understanding, perhaps letting the town know might be the best thing for those poor people. If you know of a fund to undertake such a project, I will donate $100.00 myself. I am not a blogger and do not have a blog, but I will send you my email address to your school email account.

One final thing. As a concerned Baptist layman is there anyone of the trustees I can contact to share my displeasure with?

Sincerely

Larry M. Taylor

CB Scott said...

Larry,

Send your concerns to Wade Burleson. We all do.

cb

Pastor Mike said...

swbts underground,
I would like to comment on your question of the JC on alcohol. I believe that one verse sums up our biblical view of this in light of our commission to make disciples of all people groups (Mt 28:18-20). The verse I am referring to simple states "Do not associate with anything that even appears to be evil" (my translation). Can anyone even think of arguing that alcohol is not evil? Think of the thousands that are killed or injured every year because of the evil of alcohol. The families that are destroyed. Need I go on? Each believer has a personal responsibility to impact the whole world with the gospel, and it is impossible to do it with a beer in your hand.

Serving Him,
Mike

CB Scott said...

Mr. Green,

I understand what you are saying as do most, I am sure, but you constructed your sentence on this post and that of J. Roberts to state the BF&M is inerrant. I know you do not mean that but there are some that would love to make a big deal of such a slip.

cb

SWBTS Underground said...

Dr. Reynolds,

Thank you. Let me be more clear. Many agree that consuming alcohol is unwise, and no student I know drinks alcohol. There isn't much problem there. It is the opposition to the sale of alcohol.

Does this mean then, following the logical conclusion, that the JC will advocate the rejection of restaurants who sell alcohol (Border?), watching and buying professional sport team apparel, playing on golf courses who advertise and sale alcohol, etc?

Much confusion exists.

SWBTS Underground said...

Mike,

Duet 29:29 The secret things belong to the Lord our God and the things revealed belong to us and our children forever, that we may observe all the commands of this law.


While I agree with you that the best course of action is to abstain, the question is what does the Bible say in regards to urging others not to drink? Most people with access to Scripture read and believe what it says at face value, and it says nothing of levels of alcohol in wine during NT times. Not to say that those theories aren't true.

So, could it be possible that it is not only unwise to view others with sadness and sorrow when they don't share our belief that alcohol should be abstained from, but sinful in the manner of pride in our "spiritualness."

Do you look on Dr. Mohler with sadness? If we can agree that the whole of conservative evangelical scholarship agrees that the Bible forbids the drinking of alcohol, or even calls into question the God's work in those who do, then we are talking. Otherwise, it is unwise to elevate your interpretation over the inerrancy and sufficiency of Scripture.

I think you will find this to be the prevalent view among most seminary students, at least at SWBTS.

Jim said...

Pastor Mike,

I can't let this one go. "Do not associate with anything that even appears to be evil."

There goes evangelism since people are evil. Money can have an appearance of evil. Sex can have an appearance of evil. Television can have an appearance of evil. The internet can have an appearance of evil (sorry, no more blogs).

Jesus shared the gospel with a Samaritan woman alone at a well, ate with a tax collector, allowed a sinful woman to wash and kiss his feet, appeared to break the Sabbath, drank wine (though mixed), and did many other things that may have appeared evil to others.

I don't drink alcohol. I agree that there are many good reasons for abstaining. Also, we should not cause a brother to stumble over food and drink, "for the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Sirit" (Rom. 14:17).

I'm not saying don't make your argument for abstinence. I'm saying make it... but make it well.

volfan007 said...

here we go again.....the theories of alcohol levels are not true!!!???!!! what? if you study the historical context, you will find that they did mix grape juice with water so that they would not have strong drink. the bible says that a fool drinks strong drink in proverbs.

wow, what a statement to make! there are those of us out here who believe that the bible does speak very clearly about the use of alcohol as a pleasure, get high, drink being wrong.

i sure do hope that granpappy doesnt get wind of this guy saying that drinking is ok. he'll fire up that still again. just when we had him stopped.

volfan007

SWBTS Underground said...

Volfan:

"Not to say that those theories aren't true." - is what I clearly wrote.

My point with Deut 29:29 and the sufficiency of Scripture was that people abide by the Word, and you mut recognize latitude in conscience based on the word, not "historical context," which is not accessible by all.

Anonymous said...

Dr. Reynolds,

I tried to post my concerns on mr. Berleson's site, but he only allows bloggers.

Do I have no other recourse than to take out an add in his paper? There are three men in our church that are very concerned.

Please reccommend a venue were an average church member who loves Jesus can be heard. I do not want to be unChristlike, but I think even He would be in favor of stopping Mr. Berleson and his hijacking of this convention.

Sincerely,

Larry M. Taylor

brad reynolds said...

Larry

I would hesitate giving you any advise concerning Mr. Burleson. Perhaps CB can help you here. However, I would NOT take out an add in his local newspaper. I don't think it would benefit the gospel at all to take this too the world.

We can and do disagree on SB blogs but to take it to the secular press is unadviseable in my opinion.
BR

sbc pastor said...

All,

Let me clarify my last statement:

“I, for one, have absolutely no desire to broaden the tent of SBC leadership to include those who cannot affirm 1) the inerrancy of the Bible, and 2) the BF&M.”

Thanks and God bless!!!

In Christ,
JLG

brad reynolds said...

swbts underground,

I think the issue is we have not done a good job of educating our people concerning what the Bible does say about alcohol in the original languages and contexts (as evidenced on blogs). Thus, I hope to turn the articles I have assembled into a book pastors can use.

However, the fact we have failed, by in large, in our education does not mean we can not begin to educate them...I think this is what we are trying to do.
BR

brad reynolds said...

CB

I agree the BFM2K is not inerrant but I think you agree if someone can't agree with it in all parts they shouldn't sign it. To do so is less than honest.
BR

brad reynolds said...

Larry,

I think Wade should step down...if he can't agree with the BFM2K IN ALL PARTS he should not serve as a Trustee...and I think we are within our bounds to call for his resignation and to even demand it from the convention floor.

The issue is not whether it is inerrant...the issue is whether he agrees to it, if he thinks it errs he is entitled to his opinion but don't state "I think it errs but I'll sign it and affirm it." Making such a statement begs the question as to why one would sign it in the first place? Was it just to be a Trustee? If you don't agree so be it...but don't sign it. This is what the liberal professors used to do.
BR

Anonymous said...

Dr. Reynolds,

Thank you for your advise. I agree that taking it to the public is a last resort method.

Yet in your reply to CB you stated that to sign the BF&M2K and to be in disagreement with it is less than honest. Should we not hold Rev. Burleson accountable for his dishonsety? I give $1000.00 every year to Lottie Moon in addition to my tithe. Do I not have the right to UNSEAT a less than honest trustee? Should Burleson's church members be made aware of his dishonesty?

Am I the only layman concerned over the NEW direction that the Burleson mentality is taking us/ I don"t think so. Sorry for the rant. Please forgive this old Mississippi swampboy. Maybe I am outdated.

Larry

brad reynolds said...

Larry

I think we can and should unseat him if he can't affirm all the articles.
I think what happens between he and his church should be between them. I would not feel comfortable sharing my SBC concerns with his church. They are autonomous...were I member there it would be different but I am not.
BR

SWBTS Underground said...

Dr.Reynolds,

I am having more trouble now. You hold so firmly that the Bible teaches a man should not drink, yet other evangelicals do not.

Are you saddened and sorrowed by Al Mohler and John Piper in their place on the conscience and alcohol?

brad reynolds said...

swbts underground,

Perhaps you need to reread Dr. Mohler and Piper.

Mohler, definitely comes down on the side of abstinance and as Dr. Akin notes of Piper:

John Piper teaches the wisdom of abstinence because alcohol can be a mind-altering drug, and it can be addictive. It does not help one in doing the will of God and can genuinely be a hindrance. Further, he notes “the carnage of alcohol abuse” and therefore chooses to boycott such a product. He then adds, “is it really so prudish, or narrow to renounce a highway killer, a home destroyer, and a business wrecker.”

Jim said...

Brad,

While I don't like to always talk about the "alcohol issue," I feel that you are misrepresenting Mohler and Piper.

Mohler specifically said on his radio program not too long ago that he could not say that it is a sin, in and of itself, to drink alcohol. He has chosen abstinence for himself and thinks it is the best decision.

Piper says, "The least we can infer from all this is that while drinking is not always viewed as wrong, its dangers and harmfulness were such as to call forth numerous warnings, and in some cases (priestly service, Nazirite vow, Timothy's apostolic efforts) abstinence was seen as commendable. Drunkenness is always wrong."

Further, Piper says he abstains and thinks it would be best if all Christians did. But in answering the question in relation to church membership he says, "the New Testament allows for a difference of conviction and practice on this issue in the church, and, therefore, it is wrong not to allow for that same difference in the church today. Romans 14:20, 21 puts wine-drinking in the category of eating meat and leaves the ethical judgment with the believer to grapple with whether his behavior will make the brother stumble."

I stand in my belief with these two men and others on this issue. I will not ignore the dangers of alcohol abuse and I will glorify God in my abstinence while sharing in fellowship with brothers and sisters who differ with me in this area of conscience. This is not an area which calls for separation.

CB Scott said...

Larry,

You alone do not have the right to remove any trustee for you alone did not make him a trustee. For that matter a group of trustees cannot remove a fellow trustee.

The thing you have every right to do is go to the convention in San Antonio and make a motion to remove any and all the trustees that you want to as long as your motion is in order.

Write to the EX. Comm. and ask for the proper procedure to use in making sure your motion is in order.

cb

SWBTS Underground said...

Dr. Reynolds,

I would appreciate your continued charity in these regards. I am seeking the truth in Scripture as are you. I am trying to better understand what opposition to sale and consumption of alcohol means. Please treat this as if it was brought by a class full of students.

Piper says this (From here):

“…For these four reasons, then, I am a very happy teetotaler, and I think you should be too. But that brings us to our second question: Should total abstinence be a requirement for church membership? My answer is, No. The reason is this: the New Testament allows for a difference of conviction and practice on this issue in the church, and, therefore, it is wrong not to allow for that same difference in the church today. Romans 14:20, 21 puts wine-drinking in the category of eating meat and leaves the ethical judgment with the believer to grapple with whether his behavior will make the brother stumble.”

Further, he said (in regards to changing the church covenant:
“To preserve the wisdom of the 1965 group, we should include in our Covenant a pledge to abstain from harmful drugs, food, drink, and practices. But to preserve the wisdom of the 1945 group, we should not specify what drugs, foods, drinks, or practices are intended. This allows the biblical latitude of sincerely differing consciences, but also commits us to examine everything we eat and drink and do with a view to its harmful or loving effect on ourselves and others. No one will be able to say, "I do not drink, so I have done my duty." He must now examine why he does not drink and whether any other practices should be abandoned.
We recommend, therefore, that the words, ‘We engage . . . to abstain from the sale and use of intoxicating liquors as a beverage,’ be replaced by the words, ‘We engage . . . to seek God's help in abstaining from all drugs, food, drink, and practices which harm the body or jeopardize our own or another's faith.’”

CB Scott said...

Brad,

My goal in commenting to Mr. Green was to make sure some fellow did not take him to task over what he did not really and would never really mean with his comment.

You know full well I affirmed the BF&M long before it became an issue with so many.

To answer your question I believe "you dance with the girl that "broung" you to the dance".

A faculty member, a missionary, a trustee, an administrator knows the BF&M is his date for the SBC Ball so if he is going to dance he should dance with the girl that "broung" him or send his invitation back.

Anything else would be rude behavior and you know how I feel about that also.

cb

Matt Brady said...

Larry,

I'm from Mississippi as well. I'm not sure I'm a swamp boy, but the Big Black River swamp is just a few hundred yards from my front door, and judging from your comments we may have other things in common. I'd love to make a connection with you. If you are so inclined, shoot me an email at mabbrady@bellsouth.net

Tim said...

Brad,

Here we go, now we have a group that says they stand for the BF&M 2000, AND THEN SOME.

When will it ever end? What part of "Receive one who is weak in the faith, but not to dispute ove doubtful things," Romans 14.1 do you not get?

1. Mohler pointedly and clearly stated that the Bible does not compell all Christians to a life of abstinence. Don't try to make him say what you want him to say.

2. The SBC has not "always" stood against alchol.

3. To oppose the sale of alcohol? You have made yourselves all look like a bunch of hypocrites on that one. Where will you shop for groceries? Will you forever just eat at McDonalds now? You know that at one time, (I remember) SBCers would not shop at stores or restaurants that sold alcohol, because they saw this as a violation of that old covenant. We have come off that stand.

We need to quit devouring ourselves, agree that the BF&M is enough and leave it at that.

Tim

sbc pastor said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
brad reynolds said...

Jim and SWBTS underground,

Thank you both for your spirits in our disagreement. May your example be evident to all.

Without a doubt Dr. Richard Land presented the most thorough article on alcohol, please reference it on my blog. Dr. Mohler’s comments were off the cuff on a radio show where he was answering a question. Even on the spot, he showed his brilliance…however, the bottom line: he believed in abstinence along with Drs Patterson, Akin, Roberts, Vines, Land and Page. I think, by in large, he falls squarely in the camp that the biblical position for the use of alcohol for pleasure is abstinence. He states:

“And I cannot say in all persons in all circumstances it is sin for them as Christians to do that…Another biblical issue here is just a clarification that in the Old Testament and in the New Testament, there is the drinking of wine referenced there, but as very credible scholars such as Robert Stein have demonstrated, that’s not wine in its highly fermented state, much less the kind of hard liquor or beer in its highly fermented state that is available today. This was wine that was allowed to ferment just enough to kill bacteria so that it was safe to drink. You could not drink the water during that day.”

Now while he claims one cannot state it is sin in “all circumstances” (and then describes some biblical circumstances) he does not state it is “not sin” in some circumstances.

He also says:
“I serve as president of an institution that before God believes that the best position to hold is a total-abstinence position, in accountability to other Christians, and in accountability to the churches.” The idea conveyed by his life and beliefs is not that this is the best “traditional position” to hold but the best “biblical position” to hold.

Again, read Dr. Lands article…it is thorough and as the man who speaks for SB on ethical issues I think he is worthy of our ear.

God bless
BR

sbc pastor said...

Brad and Larry,

I agree that any trustee or employee of the SBC that signs the BF&M without being in complete agreement with it should either resign or be unseated by the messengers to the convention. However, his local church is autonomous and it would be inappropriate to interfere in that arena. God bless!!!

In Christ,
JLG

sbc pastor said...

Jim, Tim, and Underground,

The issue of alcoholic beverages is certainly an important issue; however it was not the primary reason for the Joshua Convergence. In my understanding, the issue of alcoholic beverages is only a symptom of a far greater problem: the inerrancy and sufficiency of the Word of God.

The Joshua Convergence affirms that the theological course of the Conservative Resurgence is the right direction for the SBC. Thus, I believe that those who cannot affirm 1) the inerrancy of the Bible, and 2) the Baptist Faith & Message are unsuitable for leadership in our convention. BTW, that is not a narrow tent, but rather a tent that will weather the storm!

Furthermore, I do not believe that anyone who cannot unashamedly, wholeheartedly, and unequivocally affirm the inerrancy of the Bible to be a “conservative.” I do not believe that there were only 5 or 6 liberals teaching in Southern Baptist seminaries prior to, and during the early stages of, the Conservative Resurgence. I do not believe that it is ethical to sign/affirm a statement of faith without being in full agreement with its contents. Therefore, those are the primary reasons that I personally felt the need to participate in the Joshua Convergence. Unfortunately, there are some “younger leaders” that disagree with each of those statements (see my blog for more information).

Thanks and God bless!!!

In Christ,
JLG

brad reynolds said...

Tim

Lower the rhetoric my friend.

Now, Concerning Dr. Mohler read his comments yourself. And read Dr. Lands and Dr. Frank Page and other SBC leaders. While you are at it, read the SBC resolutions on alcohol (over 60!), we have never held anything other than an abstinence position.

The Bible is enough and the BFM guides SB institutions but we are free to make resolutions beyond it and always have!!! Furthermore, institutions are free to go beyond it and they always have.

Now to your question concerning purchasing meals at Applebee’s or groceries from Wal-Mart (both of whom sell alcohol) I have no trouble. Not because I am supporting the sale of alcohol but because I see no difference in this and buying a Slurpee at 7-11 where pornography is sold. I don’t think I am supporting the sale of pornography by buying a Slurpee anymore than I am supporting alcohol by purchasing a meal or groceries.

Hope this helps
BR

brad reynolds said...

Jeremy

I agree!!! Alcohol is IMHO a small small part of holiness. And holiness is just one of the 7 affirmations. I feel many will make alcohol the issue and I'm willing to discuss it...but it was not the unifying theme at TJC
BR

Jim said...

SBC Pastor,

I can see that alcohol was not the main issue at the JC. But it does appear, just from a simple reading, that alcohol is a significant issue addressed in the "holiness" affirmation.

With the exception of that issue, I am in full agreement with you.

I believe in the inerrancy and sufficiency of Scripture. I can affirm inerrancy and BFM00 in good conscience. It is unethical to sign a statement affirming your agreement when you don't.

The issue of alcohol is not an issue for separation.

Anonymous said...

Brad,

You said "I think Wade should step down...if he can't agree with the BFM2K IN ALL PARTS he should not serve as a Trustee..."

What do you think about the countless M's who signed the BFM2K but made comments on the bottom of the form to the points within the BFM2K that they disagreed with?

Informed M

brad reynolds said...

Informed M

I think they should step down...just as I believe a seminary professor who can't affirm it should step down.

It is not an issue of their not being called by God but it is an issue of not being paid by SB. To make exceptions opens the door for liberal professors again.

Hope this helps
BR

SWBTS Underground said...

JLG:

I am not making it the main issue. It, however, was affirmed to be a significant issue. If it is not a significant issue worthy of discussion, why address it at all?

My argument is from the sufficiency of Scripture, not the inerrancy, which you defended well- and I agree, about the BFM2000 and inerrancy.

An argument using the sufficiency of scripture would go like this: I believe the Bible teaches consumption of alcohol to be wrong. However, I also believe it allows for latitude of conscience like many conservative evangelical scholars. like the John Piper quote from earlier. Therefore, I am going to trust that the Scriptures will be sufficient in the believer's life to point them to this position.

The Scriptures are not only sufficient for EVERY good work (2 Tim 3:16), but a man can walk BLAMELESS with only the law of the Lord on his heart (Psalm 1), meaning no addition to that law.

I wish you guys could see that I am in more agreement than you realize. But there is a disconnect at this point you must come to terms with, or risk losing many who want to be on board this ship.

tim rogers said...

Brother Jim,

The dress of a person was also addressed in that affirmation. Alcohol was not the only thing addressed. The Joshua Convergence is not about alcohol. It is about Young Leaders being defined by the Memphis Declaration group.

If you desire to argue alcohol, feel free, but it does not need to be pointed to as a defining moment for the Joshua Convergence.

Blessings,
Tim

brad reynolds said...

swbts underground

well said...I think I can find alot to agree with on in your last comment.
BR

Pastor Mike said...

Jim,
Please let me clarify myself. I did say that I gave my own translation of the verse but it does say specifically "Abstain from the appearance of evil." If I am not mistaken the verse is talking about circumstances not people or "things" such as money. The bible say that it is the "love of money that is the root of all kinds of evil." Money is not evil in and of itself, it is what you and I do because of our greed and misuse of money that brings the evil in. Don't throw the baby out with the bath water.

Sex doesn't have an appearance of evil. It is good and right and godly in the marriage bed. Sex is evil in any other context. The bible says that sexual sins are the only ones done against your own body.

Evangelism could never be evil. It is sharing the gospel (the good news of Jesus).

Jesus did all those things you mentioned and many more, but He did them in a way that you and I could never do and that is "without sin." As I understand the Bible, it is the responsibility of every believer to represent and re-present Christ at all times and in every situation. How can I keep my integrity and ministry if I partake in the consumption of alcohol?

In Hebrews 12:1-2 the bible tells me to lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily trips us up and let us run with patience/endurance the race that is set before us. I have never seen a drunk person run without tripping up and falling. I have enough trouble living the life Christ expects me to live without adding to the problem.

I hope this helps to clarify.

Serving Him,
Mike

jgsy3kids said...

Concerning m's who signed the BF&M 2000 with caveats.

Where can an employer, hire and employee under one "agreement/contract" (the BF&M 1963) and then come back to him years later and say..."by the way, we've changed our rules and now you have to sign the new agreement ( NEW BF&M 2000) or you're out?"

I think you the m's who bowed out gracefully, were truly Christlike. They could have sued and won....

johnMark said...

Pastor Mike,

You say, "The bible say that it is the "love of money that is the root of all kinds of evil." Money is not evil in and of itself, it is what you and I do because of our greed and misuse of money that brings the evil in. Don't throw the baby out with the bath water."

And we can also say that alcohol isn't evil in and of itself though you've said "alcohol is evil". That is a gnostic position.

Likewise, in reference to money and our inability to truly know someone's heart having money could appear evil. Let me explain. It is the love of money that is the root of all evil, but since we can't know the level of love a person has with their money therefore a Christian with a lot of money could be said to have the "appearance of evil". That has to be the conclusion if we are to say that simply drinking a beer, not getting drunk, appears evil.

Maybe the JC should add a clause in their about pornography and divorce and questionable tv shows and movies. These things can easily be put into the "appearance if evil" category.

Here is a consistent path to follow for Resolution 5: http://reformatabaptista.blogspot.com/2006/08/southern-baptists-alcohol-resolution.html

Mark

Jim said...

Tim,

Your quote: "Alcohol was not the only thing addressed. The Joshua Convergence is not about alcohol."

"If you desire to argue alcohol, feel free, but it does not need to be pointed to as a defining moment for the Joshua Convergence."

My quote: "I can see that alcohol was not the main issue at the JC. But it does appear, just from a simple reading, that alcohol is a significant issue addressed in the "holiness" affirmation."

I know alcohol was not the only issue. I know it was not the main issue, as I stated before. I never pointed to it as the "defining issue." I said it was a significant issue.

brad reynolds said...

jgsy3kids

Not so my friend. Businesses change policies all the time and their employees are required to submit or leave under the new guidelines...you may want to look up case law here.
BR

brad reynolds said...

John Mark
I spoke to holiness and if you will watch TJC you will see I did say somehting about language and ludeness, drinking and dress, movies and music...but I said these were just symptoms, the problem is we are not separating ourselves from this world and to Christ. We seem to hold on to the vices of this world rather than holding on to Christ.
BR

johnMark said...

BR,

I have yet to see the videos due to time constraints. None of these others issues are listed on the statement of purpose which is the most easily accessible to folks reading what the JC is about. I will watch the videos when I get a chance though.

The symptoms are results of sin which seperates from God. I don't think it's so much about holding onto the vices of this world as it is being freed of any vice at all. Christ frees us from having any vices so one can have a beer and not be addicted or drunk, get on the internet and avoid porn, or turn off inappropriate TV shows if need be.

We all use in "worldly" things everyday, but with Christ we don't become "part" of the world and have those things become vices. Tell this to the church at large or just the SB churches who hires pastors as CEO or manager type positions giving them sales quotas to met or they're fired. Instead of selling widgets they are selling baptisms and pew seats. Okay....

Back the alcohol. If drinking versus not drinking alcohol is a holiness issue to an individual then that person should not drink at all. If this is applied to everyone I fail to see how equating those who don't drink put forth as being closer to God because of their abstinence. This makes not drinking alcohol santification issue.

Mark

Tim said...

The real issue in SBC life is what we will or will not divide over.

For those who are advocating that the Bible deals with the abuse of alcohol and does not forbid its use, it is an issue of the Sufficiency of Scripture. I have talked to many pastors, and there are many SBC pastors that personally abstain, but do not feel that the Bible demands this. Neither do they believe that the SBC should demand what is not clearly demanded by Scripture.

In our pursuit of holiness, we must not become like the Pharisees, teaching the commandments of man as the commandments of God.

Has God commanded us to abstain? No. Is it wise to abstain. YES! Can we urge people to abstain, YES! Can I stand behind the pulpit and say "thus saith the Lord, do not drink!" My conscience will not allow me speak for God in such a way.

BIG QUESTION,
Is this an issue to divide fellowship over? It would appear from the rhetoric surrounding the JC, (Which I whole-heartedly agree with everything, but the strong alcohol statement, I see it as an attempt to bring even more division).

Why even mention alcohol? It is the sin of the world not pastors. If you wanted to deal with our log, The JC should have spoken against Gluttony, being fat, overindulging in food.

Tim said...

Brad,

You said,
"we have never held anything other than an abstinence position."
First, I AM NOT IN SUPPORT OF ALCOHOL. I too think that it is the best course to abstain. I just don't think we should divide over an issue that I see as non-essential.

Certainly, we have a long history of standing for abstinence. But historically, this has not beent the case for Baptists, nor is it the case now for all Baptists around the world.

In 1896, the Southern Baptist Convention officially denounced alcohol as a result of the temperance movement in America. Before the mid to late 1800's alcohol was not forbidden.

Bruce M Sabin pointed out<
"In the history of Christianity, alcoholic prohibition is a relatively new idea. In fact, alcohol was a normal part of life. In Colonial America, the Puritans expected Christians to drink (Hearn, 1943). In the 1700s, a Baptist minister created the formula for bourbon whiskey (Hailey, 1992). During the 1800s, many Southern ministers operated stills, and sold alcohol (Hearn, 1943). Parishioners who owned stills would tithe their alcohol; and preachers' salaries often included whiskey. All this began to change, however, as the Temperance movement took shape (Hailey, 1992)."

I AM NOT IN SUPPORT OF ALCOHOL!

But there is some revisionistic history that is unbecoming of us.

posttinebraelux said...

All,
I think JohnMark is right on target. If one holds a position such that they belive the Bible forbids the recreational consumption of alcohol, they MUST logically hold that if a Christian continues to consume alcohol for recreational purposes, they are 'carnal' Christians and are living in open rebellion to the 'clear' teaching of the Bible. In which case, the issue is one of sanctification as opposed to the more innocuous term 'personal holiness'. Again, it logically follows that if it is a sanctification issue (i.e. if the Bible clearly teaches abstinence from the recreational consumption of alcohol), then to consume alcohol for recreational purposes would be a breach of sanctification. If, however, the Bible is not clear in it's mandate against the recreational consumption of alcohol (which mine isn't), then to hold such a position would be a form of legalism, no? Please understand, I am not employing the term 'legalism' in a slanderous or inciteful manner. I am employing it only in the sense that the logical conclusion of holding such a position engenders decrying those who consume alcohol for recreational purposes to be 'carnal' and to have sacrificed personal sanctification.

Sincerely,

PTL

brad reynolds said...

PTL (and JohnMark)
I missed you...where have you been?

The word sanctify in Josh 3:5 which is the verse we chose for holiness means "holiness" or setting apart. Part of sanctification is setting apart (holying) from this world to Christ.

To All
Inevitably after two months of discussion on alcohol earlier on my blog I don't think we will reach an agreement. If there are some who choose to believe we have an extra-biblical stance on alcohol, then so be it. This is part of TJC (granted a very small part - but it is a part). You are totally free to disagree and say we agree on all parts but this...nevertheless I doubt we will be changing our affirmation! I also doubt SB will stop making resolutions concerning alcohol and yet I further doubt alcohol will ever be included in the BFM.

Tim
As for me, alcohol has never divided my loyalties with brothers in Christ or even loyalties to my paternal side of my family...nevertheless I know what I believe Scriptures to teach.

Concerning Baptists...there was a difference in peoples drinking alcohol for survival purposes (up until the 18th-19th century and those drinking "strong drink" for pleasure - hence the biblical SB stand.
BR

posttinebraelux said...

Brad,
I have been silent recently because the posts have little interest to me. I am not in the least interested in the 'Eitelgate' discussion - I don't mean to be flippant, I just am not, nor do I want to be, interested in that issue. I am, however, interested in the JC to the extent that any such undertaking is, to some extent, a reation to what is going on in the national SB convention. I think it laudable for Christians/Baptists of like mind to gather together for fellowship and encouragement. I'm not sure I'd have been 'pumped up' enough to give it a formal name, but then again, I'm not the ones who did it. I wish you all God's blessing on your endeavors to the extent that what you are doing is Biblical and God-honoring (and from what I've read about it, it truly is).
As you're well aware, I'm always interested in helping make sure you evil abstentionists are playing fair - although with referees like JohnMark, SWBTS Underground, Jim, and others, I think you hardly need me. :)
At any rate, grace to you my friend and pray for me as I embark on the newest leg of my journey through this life - I'm trying to gain admittance to the Dedman School of Law at SMU. God knows we need more Christian attorneys and I'm going to do my part to balance the scales.

Shalom,

PTL

Anonymous said...

Dr. Reynolds,

Sorry to hear that CB busted a cap into the rabbit. He brought some humor into the blog world. However, I noticed that Wade has never answered the Rabbit's questions.
Do you find it odd that Wade will answer some questions and ignore others? I was in a meeting this evening and was told that the reason Wade was preparing to run McKissic was that Dr. Page was going to be offered the South Carolina Excetuive Directors position. Have you heard any news to this effect?

If you have not, I wonder if Dr. Cole has any news he will share. I hear he knows also.

Bill Dickson