Fundamentalism, McBeth, and The Review & Expositor

Discussion in 'Baptist History' started by Mark Osgatharp, Jan 15, 2006.

  1. Mark Osgatharp

    Mark Osgatharp
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    The Review and Expositor, the theological journal of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, was in the hands of the left-wing faction of the Southern Baptist Convention for several decades until the now historical purge of the late 1980s. The Winter 1982 issue was devoted to the study of "Fundamentalism".

    The articles in this issue twist the historical facts so as to represent the Bible believing Baptists as an abberation instead of the continuation of the historic Baptist faith. One of the articles was written by Martin Marty, the infamous Lutheran infidel. There is also a critical review of Paige Patterson's efforts to combat the creeping infidelity among Southern Baptists.

    An article titled "Fundamentalism in the SBC in Recent Years" was contributed by Leon McBeth, professor of church history at Southwestern Baptist Seminary in Texas and author of the popular history, "The Baptist Heritage."

    In his essay McBeth makes every effort to discredit the Bible believers and paint them as an abberation. But none, perhaps, is more exhibitive of the venom with which the theological left views those who actually believe in the Bible than the following attempt to identify them with Islamic fanaticism and terrorism. Mr. McBeth says,

    Thus we see the hatred and spite of the so called "moderate" wing of the SBC toward those who hold to the truth of the Bible.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  2. gb93433

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    I have personally heard McBeth say that the old fundamentalists are now called evangelicals. Any problem with that?

    Perhaps you should give Dr. McBeth a phone call so that you could get his point of view instead of giving your personal interpretation of his point of view.

    From what I know of him he is talking about men who cause trouble like the SBC has had in the past.
     
  3. gb93433

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    Where do you fit in?
     
  4. gb93433

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    So would you delete, "The criterion by which the Bible is to be interpreted is Jesus Christ." as the leadership did recently and then insert "All Scripture is a testimony to Christ, who is Himself the focus of divine revelation."?

    Would you also agree with, "Each congregation operates under the Lordship of Christ through democratic processes."?

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

    Give me one example from scripture where church government was done democratically.
     
  5. Mark Osgatharp

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    A. Interpreted: we don't mind if you believe in the Bible so long as you aren't too vocal about it and so long as you will tolerate those who denigrate it.

    B. There has never been an SBC faction that was remotely comparible to Islamic terrorists - not even the left wing infidels, wicked as they are in their own right.

    C. The trouble makers in the SBC were (are) those who dragged modernist infidelism into SBC institutions and churches and attempted to overthrown the Christian faith.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  6. Mark Osgatharp

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    Yes, because in the context of the historic conflicts between the Christians and infidels within the SBC, the obscure phrase "The criterion by which the Bible is to be interpreted is Jesus Christ" can't mean anything other than,

    "forget the Bible, my Geezuz told me that Abraham and Moses were full of baloney, told my wife to preach, told my aunt Minnie to speak in tongues, and told my son to marry another man."

    Only in a very limited sense do I hold that the church is operates through "democratic processes." I prefer to say that the church operates as a theocracy under the Lord Christ. What that has to do with the modernist controvesy among Baptists I do not know; perhaps you could explain.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  7. Baptist Believer

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    Yes, because in the context of the historic conflicts between the Christians and infidels within the SBC, the obscure phrase "The criterion by which the Bible is to be interpreted is Jesus Christ" can't mean anything other than,

    "forget the Bible, my Geezuz told me that Abraham and Moses were full of baloney, told my wife to preach, told my aunt Minnie to speak in tongues, and told my son to marry another man."
    </font>[/QUOTE]You're either profoundly misinformed, deliberately dishonest, or a combination of both...

    1. It's not an "obscure phrase"
    2. Even though you may think it "can't mean anything other than" what you allege here, it certainly does -- and you haven't been paying attention to the debate (at least regarding Texas Baptists (BGCT) and the SBC if you make a statement like that.
     
  8. Mark Osgatharp

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    Baptist Believer,

    I have been paying attention to the debate and know full well that the "criterion" ruse has been used by leftist Southern Baptists to justify:

    1. Modernist views on the nature of the Scriptures, which includes rejecting the theological accuracy of the Old Testament especially (as if there were some conflict between the Old Testament and the New).

    2. Women preachers.

    3. Charismatic practices.

    4. Sodomite relationships.

    5. The reality of eternal torment for the wicked.

    For the record, I am not suggesting that everyone who espouses the "criterion" philosophy carries it's use to the same extent. What I am suggesting is that the phrase is a mechanism used to justify one's rejection of whatever Scripture statements he does not like.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  9. Erasmus

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    I believe you are at odds with anyone who does not have your narrow approach to anything. You should stop playing history. You are dangerous. Have you ever attended a McBeth lecture? Have you ever attended any of the seminaries that you attack? After reading your attack on my mentor and friend, I have the overwhelming desire to start brining up Ben Bogard and has strong affiliation with the KKK. No, McBeth taught me better. So, I would encourage all the readers of this page, of whom I have am developing a deep respect, to ignore you unwarranted, biased, narrow, and ignorant rantings. To the rest of you, sorry you had to hear this.
     
  10. hamricba

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    It is worth noting that the "criterion" phrase was absent in the BFM before 1963, it had only made one appearance.

    Mark is right on its abuse- I have seen it used to bash other things like church discipline ("Jesus would never kick anyone out of the church." [Even though Matthew 18!])

    I'm glad it is gone. It was so ambiguous it became meaningless. It was also being used to make enemies out of Jesus and Paul, when clearly they must be speaking complimentarily in Scripture.

    Seems to have been borne more of the times than of the Scriptures' revelation.
     
  11. Rhetorician

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    MO,

    Please explain why:

    First,
    why you would pull an article from "The Review and Expositor" from the early 1980s to discuss? That is not germaine now, is it? All of those type of folk have probably left the SBC for one reason or another.

    Second,
    why you would want to attack something that is "old hat" and not even relevent for a contemporary discussion.

    Third,
    why you are so insistent to try to "clean someone else's house," when I am sure your denom has problems of its own that you are probably too myopic to see?

    Fourth,
    what business is it of yours any way; what the SBC does, if we are just a bunch of infidels?

    Fifth,
    why do you care???

    Sixth,
    why you have not called, written, or e-mailed Dr. McBeth and told him of your concerns?

    Most historicans are more than gracious enough to tell you the "how" and the "why" they have arrived at their conclusions. That includes the rationale for what was "put in" and what was "left out." I am more than sure he would have been glad to help you!

    I am with Erasmus above, I am sorry most of you had to hear/see this.

    sdg!

    rd
     
  12. Baptist Believer

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    Certainly the Baptist Faith and Message (and the Bible) have been misused to justify all sorts of things, but that doesn’t make them wrong and does not automatically mean that we should run around changing good statements just because someone might misuse it.

    Actually, you said,

    ”’The criterion by which the Bible is to be interpreted is Jesus Christ’ can't mean anything other than,

    ‘forget the Bible, my Geezuz told me that Abraham and Moses were full of baloney, told my wife to preach, told my aunt Minnie to speak in tongues, and told my son to marry another man.’”


    I am pointing out that ‘it can’ (and usually does) mean something different than the false caricature (“the ‘criterion’ philosophy’) you presented.

    I suppose it could be distorted to do that, but the essence of the statement is:

    1. Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life, and no one reaches the Father except through Him (John 14:6). Fundamentally, our faith is in Christ, not the Bible. Christ brings us into life and we learn and grow through our interaction and discipleship to Him. The Bible is God’s gift to us that helps and informs our relationship to Christ. We can have confidence that Jesus does not contradict the scripture and the scripture does not contradict Jesus.

    2. Jesus is the fullest revelation of God to humankind (Hebrews 1:3, John 1:17-18) and therefore all of the Old Testament and all of the New Testament epistles should be interpreted in light of Jesus as He is presented in the Gospels. The Gospels are the only portion of the Bible written specifically to unbelievers as well as believers, while the New Testament epistles are the fruit of the early church talking to itself (with the teaching inspired by the Holy Spirit) while they came to terms with the incarnation, their spiritual condition, present struggles, and hope for the future.
     
  13. Baptist Believer

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    Yes, I am fully aware of that. However, it was a good statement that is sorely needed in today’s religious environment. Today, most of us are raised to think that the primary goal our Christian life is the personal development of a theological system and support of the programs of our church. While Jesus calls us to “Follow Me” in a life of faith, discipleship, service, and transformation. This kind of discipleship requires a personal interactive relationship with Christ who trains us in the study of the scriptures, in service to others, and in communion with Him.

    But it is clear that the 2000 Southern Baptist Convention rejected the statement which indicates (at least to me) that Southern Baptists have decided that Christ and the Bible are in conflict and have chosen the Bible over Christ.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’ve heard inane things like that too, but that doesn’t mean that the doctrine should get tossed simply because people can abuse it.

    I suppose some people thought it was meaningless… To me, it was one of the most succinct interpretive principles in Baptist life – fundamentally, it claimed that Southern Baptists believe that the life and person of Christ is the standard of all faith and practice. Southern Baptists decided in 2000 that the Bible trumps Christ in faith and practice.

    If Jesus the Christ is the fullness of God incarnate (Colossians 1:15-20), then certainly He is Lord and interpreter of His written revelation.

    Yes, I’ve heard people try to make Paul out to be some sort of misogynist homophobe, but those sort of people will use any means necessary to push their views.

    And not only were Jesus and Paul speaking complimentarily in the New Testament, but Paul identified Himself as a disciple/bondservant of Jesus – so Paul himself certainly would have affirmed that Jesus is the criterion by which his words should be interpreted.

    Doctrinal confessions are not created in a cultural vacuum. All doctrinal statements are borne from the needs of the age and the revelation of scripture.
     
  14. gb93433

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    Everything is under a theocracy. Read Phil. 2. Many refuse to acknowledge that in their practice of church government and interpretation.

    The quotes I gave you have been issues and are still today. I personally see a lot of unbiblical nonsense and ignorance on both sides to bolster their political position. Both sides should be eradicated and get back to what scripture teaches. Look at how much Jesus engaged the politicians. He always pointed back to what God wanted. The moderates, fundamentalists, and liberals do not know what to do with someone who studies and make disciples. The majority of those three groups are doing little to make disciples. Those on the outside loking in see them as selfish pigs too concerned about their own self importance. Their ego is a mile high. Instead they need to get to work. I believe because of it the SBC and CBF is constantly going down.

    I assume you consider the Bible moderately important because you have done exactly what you have accused the moderates of doing. You have given your own jargon without any valid passage as I had asked of you. My beef with fundamentalists over the years is exactly what you have shown--lack of Bible to determine doctrine and practice.

    Again, give me just one example of a democratic process being used in church governement in scripture.
     
  15. gb93433

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    I have never heard you ever mention about any disciples you have made. While you are paying such attention to detail to what you think is happening in the SBC I have seen no atention to any kind of detail to making disciples. The majority of chruches in America are failing miserably at that. That kind of disobedience is far worse than some you listed. The things you wrote about have been around as long as people. So what else is new under the sun?

    If one were to take a few hours each week and make one disciple a lot of these doctrinal issues would be cleared up. When I see arguments far from scripture I see people who spend their time arguing rather than sharing their faith. Non-believers have enough brains to see right through a lot of religious nonsense. However so often those who grew up in the church think it is normal to see such ignorance and are blinded by their own ignorance.
     
  16. Mark Osgatharp

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    After reading your mentor and friends attack on those who believe the Bible, and knowing that because he has written extensively on Baptist history, I had an overwhelming desire to expose his leftist bias so as to warn the unsuspecting who might be duped by his warped conception of "The Baptist Heritage".

    Bring up Bogard all you want. I don't have to defend Ben Bogard or anything he did. In fact, I think I could make a case that he did some things that were very detrimental to the work of God. One thing I think I can say he never did, and that was to abet those who assail the Scriptures and the fundamental truths of Christianity.

    I see, it's OK for your friend and mentor to publish material bashing those who stand for the word of God and smearing them as being something akin to Moslem terrorists, but it's not OK for me to hold up his "unwarranted, biased, narrow, and ignorant rantings" as a spectacle for the Baptist Board.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  17. Mark Osgatharp

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    This is a forum for the disuccsion of Baptist history.

    No, they did not all leave the SBC by any stretch of the imagination.

    A. History is by nature the discussion of "old hat."

    B. This issue is by no means a dead horse. If it was, it wouldn't be creating such a stir among the resident acedemians.

    For your information, I have be as vocal in my denunciations of the problems within my own association. If you don't believe it go to ABA TOPICA FORUM and search the archives for my name.

    I don't think the Southern Baptist are "just a bunch of infidels". I think there are many sincere Christians within the SBC who truly believe in the Bible and who are currently engaged in a bitter struggle for the soul of Christianity and anything I can do to help them along I will do. On top of that, whatever the SBC does ultimately affects all Baptists in this country because they set the pace for what is acceptable and what is not.

    A. See above.

    B. Because I love the souls of those caught up in infidelism.

    C. Most importantly, I love Jesus Christ, His churches, and His Scriptures, and am therefore glad to oppose anything in this world which would destroy His work.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  18. Mark Osgatharp

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    Faith in Christ is inseprable from faith in the Bible. As Paul said,

    "And that from a child thou hast known the holy Scriptures which are able to make the wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus."

    If only the modernists could understand that so called "fundamentalism" flows from this simple, Biblical reality, then at least they might have been so charitable as to attribute our zeal to a sincere belief in The Book than to smear us with being something akin to Moslem terrorists. But you said,

    A good principle within itself. Until someone uses it to the effect of, "Jesus called my momma to preach and Jesus does not contradict Scriptures, therefore, whatever Paul meant when he said 'let your women be silent in the churches', he didn't mean that Jesus wanted my momma to be silent in the church."

    Or, "Jesus said, Love your neigbor, and it is not loving to tell your neighbor he is headed for eternal blazes, therefore Jesus doesn't want you to tell your neighbor he is headed for eternal blazes."

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  19. gb93433

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    You are right. Those who say they are fundamentalists but don't practice it are still there. Many of them are in evangelism. One of my friends wondered if one of the professors we had was even a believer because of his laziness toward scripture and ego about himself. He is still teaching and writing too. Some of those are able to fool the public well by the words they say. Their practice is all revealing though.

    All one has to do is to simply take a look at the disciples they have made. If no disciples, then they are disobedient. That narrows the number to a very low mark. Why listen to anyone who does no make disciples?
     
  20. Erasmus

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    Rhetorician is a wise man.
     

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