Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Southern Baptist Convention a Fundamentalist's Dream

My father was a Southern Baptist. He was a member of Old Union Baptist Church in Young Harris, GA. He lead singing and was, at one time, Sunday school superintendent. He was not, however, a fundamentalist. If he were alive today, I don't expect that he would be at all enthusiastic as he read the newspaper articles and blogs that I have read today. In many ways he was quite tolerant, but not tolerant enough to accept the dictatorial attitude of today's Southern Baptist Convention. The Southern Baptist Church has been hijacked by a hoard of religious tyrants pent upon turning that organization into a haven of fundamentalism.

Today, the Atlanta Journal and Constitution published an article about the SBC's disciplining of the First Baptist Church of Decatur, GA, a 2700 member congregation, led by the Rev. Julie Pennington-Russell. I would not have been surprised if the SBC had singled out the church because its pastor has a hyphenated name. But no, it is much worse than that. The Rev. Pennington-Russell is a woman. There is no place in the SBC for a female pastor.

The Convention has stated that it will not accept donations from the Decatur church because it is not in line with SBC beliefs. The church will lose its voting status in the convention and cannot contribute to missions and other programs. The Decatur First Baptist has been a member of the Convention since 1862 and has contributed millions to its various programs.

So who is the loser here? It appears to me that the SBC is the loser. It will be losing a major source of revenue at a time when money for missions and other programs of assistance can't be bringing in as much as in the past. In addition the Convention is showing itself to be out of sync with many of its followers. There are other actions taking place in other states within the SBC as it clamps down on others who disagree with Convention policies. The message being sent is that anyone who fails to toe the fundamentalist interpretation will be dealt with swiftly and severely.

Maybe the SBC should have done something more in line with its beliefs as punishment to Decatur First Baptist. Since it is returning to the dark days of the church, perhaps the SBC should consider burning the Rev. Pennington-Russell at the stake.

Correction: I must correct myself. This church was disciplined by the Georgia Baptist Convention not the SBC. However, the GBC was simply following the lead of the SBC.


That Baptist Ain't Right said...

The SBC has forgotten that its mission is to become more like Christ. Instead, the SBC is becoming more like the Pharisees.

Anonymous said...

The SBC is standing against today's culture in ways that upset liberals. We will find out in eternity who is wrong, but in the present time it seems like satan is having a hey day stirring up folks against their brothers and sisters in Christ. That takes time away from presenting the gospel to a lost world. If we wish to compromise and get along in the world, it becomes difficult to determine who belongs to the Lord. mom2

Georgia Mountain Man said...

Mom2, I don't believe that I would go so far as to think that anyone who disagrees with the SBC is very liberal. I'd say you were right about the devil stirring up people against their brothers and sisters. The SBC is doing a great job of setting members against members. It's happening throughout that organization. Unfortunately, I'd say that the SBC in the future will become a marginalized organization as more and more of its members and churches move away from it.