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Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by rsr, Nov 8, 2003.
The Associated Baptist Press reports:
PICK YOUR CONFESSION
More quotes from the article with my commentary:
"Patrick Stewart, pastor of First Baptist Church of St. Charles, ..."
Captain Picard is a pastor in Illinoise? I had no idea.
"made the motion to insert into the committee's recommendation a sentence giving official status to the 2000 Baptist Faith and Message. It's good to affirm multiple faith statements, he said, but "we need to have a single standard."
We do. It is called the Bible.
"Having an official statement of beliefs is also important, he said, because it's not enough to "say the Bible alone is going to be our standard."
That is a sad statement. I think I heard a Catholic make this very argument the other day in the Other Religions forum while defending the idea that the Church's interpretations of scripture supercede Scripture itself. Isn't it interesting that the faiths that operate on this system have so much false teaching and scandal? Our standard is, and always has been the Bible. To get away from this is to destroy the Church. The Holy Spirit working within us as Christians through the scripture is what keeps our doctrine correct. Not a man-made creed by Paige Patterson.
"Episcopalians are being torn apart over the issue of homosexuality, he said, and both sides say the Bible represents their views."
And is he trying to claim that this came from a Bible as only standard attitude? Don't the Episcopalians have creeds, and all the other Anglican trappings the SBC is now trying to embrace?
Its quiet obvious that the SBC at the national level is controlled by core conservative types---but when we go down to the state level--the control shifts to the moderates who gleefully embrace the CBF which gleefully embraces pro-homosexuality and female pastors.
State conventions are gonna wake up ten years from now and regret not adopting and embracing the BF & M 2000 as their standards for beliefs. When pro-homosexuel groups begin to wrap their deadly tentacles around state groups and when more and more churches call female pastors--its my belief the state conventions will live to regret not moving on the BF &M 2000. My church has already constituted the statement and is loyal to the SBC!
While I agree with you that a state convention should adopt a belief statement to insure doctrinal integrity - I'm not sure it's fair to label states conventions that don't as being controlled by moderates.
I don't think that's the case in Illinois.
There is a legitimate concern in Churches like mine in Missouri that there will come a day when the State Convention will dictate to the local church that it MUST AFFIRM the current BF&M in order to be a member of the State Convention.
Since my church is the church that hosted the first meeting of the organization in 1834 that later became the Missouri Baptist Convention we are resistant to changing the statement of faith that we were organized by in 1826.
We were Baptists before there was a State Convention and a National SBC and we're still Baptists now and we frankly don't seen a need in changing our Statement of Faith to conform to modern confessional statements.
Having said that I don't have any problem with employees of State Conventions or the SBC being required to sign the BF&M 2000. However if it ever becomes the case that any convention dictates to a local church what they must affirm then I will have a big problem.
So the Bible is not our sole standard anymore? How sad. I disagree with boh of you. I think if more preachers would spend more time preaching the Word of God than they do signing man-made creeds and doing man-made church growth programs, we wouldn't be having half the problems we are today. The Word of God will not return to us void. If the conservatives can force a man-made document (creed) on the church, what is going to stop the liberals, if they ever did retain power in the convention (you don't believe that conservatives will stay in power forever, do you) from doing the same thing the other way. IMO, all you have to do is look at the Anglican churches and their false doctrines and their acceptance of evil lifestyles to figure out how far the other way a man-made creed can go when it is elevated above scripture (Catholics, and Episcopalians). If we want sound doctrine, we must affirm the scripture alone as our sole standard in doctrine.
Isn't the BF&M 2000 based solely on scripture? Or did I miss something?
It is not Scripture though, and should not be elevated to the level of Scripture itself in authority. Neither should it be elevated above scripture. Because in the end, it is a man's interpretation of scripture.
Joseph--the document doesn't set itself above the scriptures(Papacy)---neither does it move itself to "compliment" scripture(book of morman).
The way I view the document is this---the BF & M 2000 is kinda, sorta a sermon that Southern Baptists as a whole are sending to the world around us that says something like, "This is what we believe about Scriptures! This is what we believe about God! This is what we believe about the Lord Jesus Christ! This is what we believe a man must do in order to be saved!---so forth and so on!
How can the document be a "demand" upon any church when in the document it identifies the church as "an autonomous local congregation of baptized believers, associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the gospel . . . In such a congregation each member is responsible and accountable to Christ as Lord. Its scriptural officers are pastors and deacons." ***see note below
No one person is telling the local church what to believe--rather--the document is the voice of the Southern Baptist Convention telling the world---in a way, collectively, "This is what we believe as Southern Baptists!"
My advise to any reader---is---get you a copy of the BF & M 2000---read the report given by the BF & M 2000 committee(sorta the introduction/preamble to the document itself) and then read and reread and reread again what the statements are actually saying---
***Note: Above is quoted from the Baptist Faith and Message 2000 version---page 13
David, We definitely disagree here. The Bible is my only standard and will always be my only standard for doctrine. I will never affirm any doctrinal statement or make it an official document to be obeyed by the church like the BF&M (any version) because that is the same thing as setting it as equal to or above scripture. It is man's interpretation of scripture and not scripture itself.
If you want me to affirm something or sign something, give me a Bible and I will sign my name to it. If the world wants to know what Baptists believe, let them read the Bible because that is our standard. That is our only standard for doctrine. Also, what if liberals gained control of the Convention and wrote their own creed? Would you want to have to affirm it also?
I should think not.
Joseph, Mormons say if you want to know what they believe, read the Bible. Catholics say if you want to know what they believe, read the Bible. Episcopals say the same thing. Methodists, Jehovah's Witnesses, Lutherans, Seventh Day Adventists...all say the same thing.
It's all the same Bible. But do we all believe the same thing? Not by a long shot.
So, based on what you are saying, could a Methodist be a missionary for the IMB of the SBC? After all, it's all the same Bible, right?
In my opinion, the BF&M clearly states what we, as Baptists believe, based on, yes, our interpretation of scripture. But our interpretation of scripture is what makes us Baptists. And if you want to preach and teach as a denominational Baptist, there needs to be some standard of validity that what you preach and teach will be in line with what we believe.
Have you read the entire BF&M2000, including the preamble?
I was interested to read that the Philadelphia Confession was one of the six confessions affirmed. I am curious as to how many SB's in Illinois might actually hold the Philadelphia Confession?
So is the SBC saying that the earlier BF&M's were not adequate? One only has to read Acts 20 and realize that a doctrinal statement will not keep out wolves. And that is according to scripture not some man produced document. Just look at the man produce documents and you wil quickly realize that they are always changing.
When I was a student at SWBTS several of the older professors told me that over their years of teaching that they had noticed that the students coming in knew less and less about what the Bible taught. So what does that say about the Bible teaching in our churches today. I can remember in one church I pastored some of the leaders told me they wanted me to preach on what Baptists believe. I told them I will preach on what the Bible teaches not what Baptists believe. Those leaders knew what Baptists believe but not what scripture taught. They were not even sharing their faith and discipling others.
Recently a friend of mine told me about a couple who wanted to get married. He found out that she had attended a church as a child but was fed up with the legalism. She knew it wasn't right. She knew what those Baptists believed. But what they believed was not in accordance with scripture, God's grace or His mercy. Those people did not understand God's grace so they passed judgment. When I graduated from seinary a pastor search committeee asked me what I learned. I told them I saw more of Jesus' compassion. That was mostly in Greek class.
If we understand how God has been so gracious to us we will be more gracious to others as God has been to us.
So what does that say about the changing BF&M and those who made the changes? How they would like it to be the standard but it will never attain the standard of scripture.
I have pastored long enough to know there are those who can tell you what Baptists believe but have never led one person to Christ and if ever shared their faith. That shows what they really believe. And they call themselves Baptist.
One can be a Baptist and not be a follower of Christ. A Baptist can be dunked and lost. Still being a wet sinner. All of us who have pastored have seen it more times than we would like.
What a hollow argument, If you don't like the BF&M 2000 you must not like the bible. That is just plain stupid! The reason many don't like the 2000 is because it dimisses the priesthood of the believer and autonomy of the local church, not because we don't believe the bible. Please grow-up!
Um...the BFM2K is not the Bible. It is a man's interpretation of the Bible. You do realize this, right? I am not against the BFM, per say, rather its elevation in authority being made equal to and higher than scripture. My one standard for doctrine is the Bible alone, and the holy spirit, not some man-made creed will be my guide for interpretation. I think the Holy Spirit is much more reliable. Don't you?
That is just plain stupid! [/QUOTE]
Can you feel the love tonight...
Don't worry. Even I lose my cool every now and then.
The reason many don't like the 2000 is because it dimisses the priesthood of the believer and autonomy of the local church, not because we don't believe the bible. Please grow-up! [/QUOTE]
It does? Please elaborate on this idea of dismissing the priesthood of all believer and autonomy of the local church. I think there are probably some fundamentalists out there who would disagree with you. I think they are under the illusion that it doesn't. Do you think the local church should not be autonomous? Should it be a top down goverment, much like, say, the Catholic Church? I think I am understanding a little better now. No wonder they are wanting to elevate a creed to the same level of authority as the Bible. Not for me, thanks. As for me and my house, we will stick to the Bible as our standard for doctrine and the Holy Spirit to guide us in interpretation. We will serve the Lord and not some man and his interpretation of Scripture.
Joseph, the BFM is a shortened systematic theology. Everyone has one, no matter how undeveloped it is.
The moderates are hilarious. They are still trying to convince people it was political. It wasn't. None of it was. There was a peace committee that was made of both apostates and conservatives. They both agreed the divide was theological.
Moderates are so dishonest. They were not honest about their beliefs to the baptist in the pew. That is one reason the struggle lasted so long. When people became aware, they drew blood.
Like a cancer, the apostates were cut off. There are some danglers of course. In fact, 4 of 'em just left Southwestern.
Ah yes more slander from little danny davey, I imagine he makes the fundamentalists proud to be fundamentalists. Those apostates he refers to are brothers in Christ, fine men who were praised by Dr. Patterson himself. I imagine that all you that were offended by the reference to Dr. Patterson as Pope Patterson will be equally offended by Danny boy's apostate remark.
He started it...
Thanks Joseph I needed that, I just let the little guy under my skin - all he knows is to parrott the party line
In 1925 the BFM was written to address what was taking place theologically and culturally. In those days post-modern thought was beginning to leak out of our universities and into the general public. That way of thinking called into question the authority of the Bible. Thus, fundimentalists began to stress the five fundamentals of the faith. Likewise, evolution theory was at the forefront of the battle. The 1925 BFM was written to counteract these theological and cultural situations.
Then in 1961 the trustworthiness of the Genesis was called into question. Liberal Baptist scholarship from Ralph Elliott in his The Message of Genesis called the first 11 chapters of Genesis into question. Thus, in 1963 the SBC updated the BFM to address this new theological threat to our beliefs about the Bible.
Then by 2000 the egalitarian movement had moved away from the traditional Baptist understanding that the Bible teaches that women may not serve as pastors of churches. Hence, the BFM was updated to address this new shift in liberal theology. At the same time our culture was engaged in the debate over homosexual marriage. Thus, the BFM was updated to address this social/cultural issue.
The people who work on the committee to update the BFM cannot see into the future to know what the next theological controversy or social/cultural issue will be. They simply address the issue(s) at hand. The changes in the BFM over the years reflect what is going on in the real world surrounding Baptist life. Each update has been made to draw a line in the sand and say as Baptists this is where we stand.
This is all sad and very true. It spaeks to the quality of pastoral leadership (or lack thereof)that these people have been under. Baptists should know Baptist doctrine and be able to defend it against attacks from liberals within and without. However, they do need more. They need to be solidly and soundly grounded in the Word of God and be sold out for evangelism and missions due to their love for their Savior.