Thursday, May 31, 2012

Agressive, arrogant Calvinists and the possibility of an SBC counter-reformation

One by-product of the interesting, though misguided, resolution of the Consolation Baptist Association suggesting that churches steeply cut their Cooperative Program is Calvinism, Calvinist pastors, and the young, reformed, ministerial products of two of our SBC seminaries.

This association is in another part of the state from me, one which I pass through occasionally but for which I don't have a lot of familiarity with churches, Associational Missionaries, or pastors. It is in Vidalia Onion country, as good a reason to appreciate that part of Georgia as anything. The famous 'Jesus Loves You Double Cheeseburger' sign is somewhere in that area.

I have some observations about Calvinists and churches derived from personal, anecdotal experiences. A strain of my reformed Baptists colleagues has been absolutely lethal in churches, although I haven't heard a lot lately about such things around here.

Calvinism and Calvinistic seminary graduates are seen by some as problems in that part of Georgia. The resolution tosses in the issue and mentions two unnamed seminaries (Southern and Southeastern) and their presidents (Al Mohler and Danny Akin) as sources of problem graduates who are seen as "arrogant" and difficult. The specter of "agressive Calvinism" is raised in the resolution's supporting document.

I don't  buy all this, nor do I see what some of my colleagues seem to be seeing in South Georgia; however, if a perception like that is as widespread as it seems our two seminaries and presidents ought to pay attention. I know what it is like to be looked upon with suspicion because of the place I took my MDiv degree.

... and is the nomination of Eric Hankins as SBC first vice president the beginning of an SBC counter-reformation?

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