I want to offer this question for those who would care to input. There have been some recent criticism of the direction of the SBC and more specifically there have been personal attacks on those in SBC leadership. In two ways I would like to offer for discussion a question about the role of SBC leadership. The first pertains to the amount of authority the SBC leadership holds in the life of the church. The second relates to the amount of respect a SBC leader should warrant. I do not want to offer my final analysis without giving some of you here a chance to weigh in, but I will start off by suggesting that I do not think that many Baptist will agree nor should they agree that there is lack of autonomy for the local church. SBC churches are fully autonomous, that is they hold the authority to make decisions without the need to seek approval from a higher institutional authority. However, that does not mean that churches are independent. We as Christians are not independent of one another, we are interdependent. We are called to hold one another into account. We as Christians are all apart of the universal body of believers and therefore a part of invisible church. Therefore, I submit that while SBC leaders are not directly over the churches they serve, they are to be respected for the experience they have and the knowledge of the Lord they demonstrate. Inasmuch as the SBC leaders are God called men and women, they should also be respected for the fact that they serve the Lord.