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As Baptists Prepare to Meet, Calvinism Debate shifts to Heresy Accusation
Christian Today ^ | 6 July 2012 | Weston Gentry

Posted on 07/06/2012 6:25:11 AM PDT by Cronos

A statement by a non-Calvinist faction of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) has launched infighting within the nation's largest Protestant denomination, and tensions are expected to escalate Tuesday as church leaders descend on New Orleans.

..The May 30 document, "A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God's Plan of Salvation," aims "to more carefully express what is generally believed by Southern Baptists about salvation." But both Southern Baptist Theological Seminary president Albert Mohler and George W. Truett Theological Seminary professor Roger Olson, in separate blog posts, said that parts of the document sound like semi-Pelagianism, a traditionally heretical understanding of Christian salvation.

One sliver of the document's second article particularly drew their ire. It reads, "We deny that Adam's sin resulted in the incapacitation of any person's free will."

..Olson, a classical Arminian and author of the book Against Calvinism, is unaffiliated with the SBC, but has long asserted that most evangelicals—not just Southern Baptists—adhere to a sort of semi-Pelagian "folk religion," whose origins can be traced to the Second Great Awakening and revivalists in the mold of Charles Finney.

..Paige Patterson, president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, denies the charge. "We are obviously not semi-Pelagians," Patterson said. "We do believe that the entire human race is badly affected by the fall of Adam. However, we don't follow the Reformed view that man is so crippled by the fall that he has no choice."

..A just-released survey conducted by LifeWay Research found that roughly equal numbers of SBC pastors identify their congregation as Calvinist/Reformed (30%) or Arminian/Wesleyan (30%). More than 60 percent are concerned about Calvinism's influence on the denomination.

(Excerpt) Read more at christianitytoday.com ...


TOPICS: Catholic; Current Events; Evangelical Christian
KEYWORDS: baptist; calvinist; catholic
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To: Cronos

“I mean, it’s nice to say “the Bible and the divinity of Christ”, but, then does that mean a, say non-Trinitarian group can be SBC? “

No. When their position was made known, they would be forced out, as have several homosexual tolerant congregations.

The statements in the link below are not binding in the sense that not all congregations accept them. Many congregations reject any idea of a doctrinal statement. However, congregations rejecting the Trinity, or saying homosexuals can marry, would not last long in the SBC.

Conversely, any member congregation can leave at any time. The SBC exists to provide common support for missions and seminaries.

http://www.sbc.net/bfm/bfmcomparison.asp


51 posted on 07/09/2012 7:24:24 AM PDT by Mr Rogers (Liberalism: "Ex faslo quodlibet" - from falseness, anything follows)
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To: Mr Rogers
But how would you technically "force them out" if they still say "the Bible and the divinity of Christ"?

The Orthodox would maintain that if you innovate from Orthodoxy, your parish gets tossed out, but the Baptists don't have orthodoxy. So how? seriously

52 posted on 07/09/2012 7:40:14 AM PDT by Cronos (**Marriage is about commitment, cohabitation is about convenience.**)
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To: Cronos

At the annual convention, a member would object to their staying in the SBC based on their public teaching. There would then be a vote on removing that congregation.

Remember, each congregation is autonomous. The SBC exists to pool resources for seminaries (which is why we have theological debates) and missions. A congregation can leave at any time. And if the SBC failed to remove a congregation that denied the Trinity, most of the congregations would leave and pool their resources elsewhere.


53 posted on 07/09/2012 8:09:47 AM PDT by Mr Rogers (Liberalism: "Ex faslo quodlibet" - from falseness, anything follows)
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To: Mr Rogers

thank you for the explanation


54 posted on 07/09/2012 8:25:19 AM PDT by Cronos (**Marriage is about commitment, cohabitation is about convenience.**)
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To: Cronos

No, the Gospel message as presented in the Bible must be understood and believed in order to be SBC. Non-Trinitarian would not qualify because it’s not Biblical. Preaching “another Gospel” would be heresy and the manner in which the
SBC must answer to the individual churches and the pressure they would bring to bear would oust this in a hurry. Ditto for any attempt to bring about “gay marriage” or “gay civil rights”.

The point here is that squabbling about “how” God goes about what He does is just that - squabbling. It’s not heresy. (Though I’m sure there are some dyed-in-the-wool 5 point TULIP Calvinists who would try to make a case otherwise, but in the end the essential nature of the Gospel is clearly presented in Scripture.)


55 posted on 07/09/2012 8:34:45 AM PDT by JLLH
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To: Cronos

“The article is more about one of the factions trying to impose it’s view on the other and the disagreements therein.”

Which is why I said the SBC has “been there and done that”. This has all happened before in the life of the organization. Nothing new here. It will work itself out, as did the other. It’s just a distraction.

I was responding in part to the idea that the SBC would go the way of these liberal organizations. I do not see that at all because there’s too much built-in accountability to the local churches. The SBC in and of itself is accountable to the local church congregations which affiliate. BTW, Fred Luter, by all accounts is as Biblical a preacher as one could want. Those who object to what he said about “supporting his president” need not read into that anything other than a patriotic support for the office and conviction to pray for the person in that office. He’s made it clear that he disagrees vehemently with Obama on the one key issue of gay marriage, though he likely wasn’t asked to enumerate all the areas in which he parts ways with the current Pres.


56 posted on 07/09/2012 8:41:21 AM PDT by JLLH
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To: Mr Rogers; Cronos

No. When their position was made known, they would be forced out, as have several homosexual tolerant congregations.

The statements in the link below are not binding in the sense that not all congregations accept them. Many congregations reject any idea of a doctrinal statement. However, congregations rejecting the Trinity, or saying homosexuals can marry, would not last long in the SBC.

Conversely, any member congregation can leave at any time. The SBC exists to provide common support for missions and seminaries.

http://www.sbc.net/bfm/bfmcomparison.asp

EXACTLY. And you have asked “how”, Cronos. The SBC would not accept the funds that were sent to it by the church and would refuse to seat their messengers at the convention. They would, in effect, be ousted from the association.


57 posted on 07/09/2012 8:48:26 AM PDT by JLLH
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To: Mr Rogers

“At the annual convention, a member would object to their staying in the SBC based on their public teaching. There would then be a vote on removing that congregation.

Remember, each congregation is autonomous. The SBC exists to pool resources for seminaries (which is why we have theological debates) and missions. A congregation can leave at any time. And if the SBC failed to remove a congregation that denied the Trinity, most of the congregations would leave and pool their resources elsewhere.”

This.


58 posted on 07/09/2012 8:50:10 AM PDT by JLLH
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To: wideawake; All; Cronos; wagglebee; napscoordinator; little jeremiah; P-Marlowe
13 posted on Fri Jul 06 2012 09:40:47 GMT-0500 (Central Daylight Time) by wideawake: “Compare this: ‘We deny that Adam's sin resulted in the incapacitation of any person's free will’ With: ‘When God touches man's heart through the illumination of the Holy Spirit, man himself is not inactive while receiving that inspiration, since he could reject it; and yet, without God's grace, he cannot by his own free will move himself toward justice in God's sight.’ (CCC 1993) And: ‘Ignorance of the fact that man has a wounded nature inclined to evil gives rise to serious errors in the areas of education, politics, social action and morals.’ (CCC 407)”

That's a scary point.

I know this is old but it warrants comment. It looks like the official Catechism of the Catholic Church is better on soteriology than this statement by so-called evangelical Southern Baptists.

Politically, I think we all understand that conservative pro-life evangelicals (whether Arminian, Calvinist, or something else) need to work together with Roman Catholics in the political realm. What I'm afraid we're going to find out as evangelicals is that we have more in common with a fair number of Roman Catholics than with a lot of ignorant evangelicals.

That is our own fault as evangelicals to teach the basics of salvation. Rome is wrong, but semi-Pelagianism is much worse.

Yes, we have valid reasons to stand in the line of the Reformation, but if we're going to do so, it means more than criticizing Catholics. Apparently, we have people in our own evangelical circles advocating worse doctrines than the official position of Rome.

That should not be. We need to clean up our own house as evangelicals.

59 posted on 10/02/2012 9:48:53 AM PDT by darrellmaurina
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To: darrellmaurina

conservatives of all stripes have a lot more in common than the liberals...


60 posted on 10/02/2012 11:25:21 AM PDT by Cronos (**Marriage is about commitment, cohabitation is about convenience.**)
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To: Cronos
Fully agreed, Cronos.

I have far more in common with traditional Roman Catholics, Orthodox Jews, or even patriotic secular conservatives than I have in common with liberals who call themselves Christians.

The problem in this case, however, is that there are strong evangelicals and fundamentalists who seem to have a lower view of the effects of original sin than the Roman Catholic Church.

Politically, we can all agree on most things.

Theologically, we've got a real problem in our own evangelical house that we need to address. It's not good when the official Roman Catholic position has a higher view of the effects of original sin than the views expressed in a document signed by a group of Southern Baptist pastors.

Roman Catholicism is not Pelagianism. We need to give Roman Catholics credit for that.

61 posted on 10/02/2012 12:28:29 PM PDT by darrellmaurina
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