Page answers bloggers questions

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Jimmy C, May 23, 2006.

  1. Jimmy C

    Jimmy C
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    Tad Thompson put some questions to Ronnie Floyd that at first he said that he would answer, then later declined. Thompson put essentially the same questions to Dr Page - which he answered. the following link will take you to the interview: http://pastortad.blogspot.com/2006/05/drfrank-page-answers-questions-for-sbc.html

    The following is from sbc outpost, Dr. Page is if anything even more direct in this press release:

    http://www.sbcoutpost.blogspot.com/


    Press Release Regarding Presidential Candidacy of Frank S. Page


    Life became more complicated for me as of Wednesday, May 10. On that day, I had the first call from a dear brother in Missouri (whom I have never met), who encouraged me to consider running for President of the Southern Baptist Convention. Several days of phone calls, emails, and letters immediately followed which have been overwhelming, to say the least. To be honest, it was an honor that I have never experienced before nor expected to come my way. Unlike some dear brothers, I had never thought of the possibility or the probability of being elected to any such office. It has been an eye opening experience.

    I have decided to allow my name to be nominated as president of the Southern Baptist Convention. I have come to this decision after a great deal of thought, Bible study, counsel from friends, and much prayer. As anyone would imagine, one must have a peace about any such decision.

    What is this election truly about? First of all, let me say that it is not about personalities. All the persons involved in these elections are wonderful men of God. Johnny Hunt is my friend. I love him. Ronnie Floyd has done a great work for our Lord.

    It is not about theology. All of the persons involved in these candidate positions are God fearing, Bible believing, conservative men of God.

    It is primarily about methodology. It is about how we do missions and how we do convention work.

    I would ask that all Southern Baptists take a moment and think about the issues that are involved in this year’s convention. Much has been written and said about the upcoming meeting in Greensboro. Many of our beloved institutions or agencies are in a state of turmoil and/or transition. Everyone knows of the ongoing tension within the trustees of the International Mission Board. Add to this the tension on the field as missionaries have changed to an entirely different missions methodology over the last several years. In addition, our North American Mission Board is in an absolute state of turmoil. The resignation of the president and the issues that led up to that resignation have brought morale to a low level and questions about the agency’s effectiveness abound.

    There is a serious disconnect between the leaders of our Southern Baptist Convention and the rank and file lay person and pastor. Some perceive that there is a well oiled machine, filled with power hungry politicians, running the show while the vast majority of loyal, supportive people are left without any voice and/or influence. While this observation may or may not be true, there is a serious perception of disconnect and distrust.

    There is a perception of increasingly narrow parameters for cooperation. Sometimes these parameters are put into place by trustees who feel the need to clarify and/or narrow criteria for service. Sometimes these parameters are placed by denominational persons who encourage certain levels of giving before one is considered an appropriate candidate for service. Sometimes these parameters require one to pastor a certain size church. Yes, we must have guidelines. Let us be careful to make sure that they have biblical basis. Whatever reality is, perception is that there is an increasingly narrowed convention in regards to control and/or influence. There is the issue of Cooperative Program support. Stories about percentages, amounts, etc., are flying all over the media. Is this election going to be one in which a candidate is elected who gives little support to the Cooperative Program and at the same meeting the convention is asked to vote on initiatives which strengthen the Cooperative Program (and expect leaders to model that cooperation)?

    I feel strongly that Southern Baptists need to deal with all of these issues. In addition to these are declining baptisms, declining Sunday School attendance, declining participation in almost every category. We are facing dangerous days as key indicators show alarming patterns. Above all that, there is an overall malaise among many people. There are many groups that state that the "threads" by which we are connected are becoming increasingly frayed and tenuous. What will hold us together? What will pull us back together? Is there any way for us to do anything other than to rearrange deck chairs on a sinking Titanic? Is there a way to correct perceptions that may be inaccurate?

    I believe that several things needs to be done. First, I call on all those who are in positions of leadership to become more open to a truly democratic convention. Let us have two or more conservative, solid candidates run each year. Without calling into question anyone’s integrity or veiled threats regarding suicide of political futures, let us be able to have honest, open dialogue about points of agreement and disagreement. I call on all those who are in positions of authority to recognize the need to involve a larger number of persons. Many of us are tired of seeing the same names on committees year after year. Many of us are losing patience with the perception that a few people control everything in the Southern Baptist Convention.

    I also call upon denominational workers to recognize that while the Cooperative Program is important, we must affirm that all mission work is vital and appropriate. I will never cast aspersions upon any church or pastor who is on mission for God. Whether or not they do it through the Cooperative Program or through our convention or on their own, they have to answer before the Lord as to how they do mission work.

    Denominational leaders must recognize that a bloated bureaucracy is being looked upon with great disrespect by many. Instead of shouting the announcement louder and louder, "give more, give more!", we must open the convention up to more dialogue so that we can be more responsive to the rank and file person.

    With all that being said, let me state a personal conviction, I am a Southern Baptist! For me personally, to say that I am a Southern Baptist and not attempt to correct problems and situations from within is irresponsible. I also believe that to vote on various issues and/or to say that I am a Southern Baptist and not to give sacrificially to support almost 10,000 missionaries is to be morally irresponsible.

    I agree with Dr. Ronnie Floyd on the issue of revival. We all need to reread Psalm 51 and II Chronicles 7:14! For almost 30 years we have concentrated on doctrinal purity (Praise the Lord!). Let us now add to our passion, revival, soul winning, and missions!
     

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