In my previous two posts I dealt with the false perception that discrimination was a valid reason to change the name. I also presented an argument that church planters do not go door to door expressing inviting people to come to their ‘Southern Baptist Church’. This final post will be a two-part post to deal with separating from our past. It seems that is another reason that we are hearing from those advocating a name change–our past is objectionable to some in leadership today.
While some are not as bold as to say we need to separate from our past they will speak about the “rich heritage” we have in the SBC. Whenever they speak about this “rich heritage” they will use only the names of those they admire. For example one writer expressed his admiration of our “rich heritage” but never once mentioned the names of Dr. Hershel Hobbs, Dr. Cecil Sherman, Dr. Olin T. Binkley, or Dr. L.R. Scarborough. Granted the writer was only mentioning names and I will give that benefit of the doubt. However, we cannot separate ourselves from the facts of our theological differences and how we work through those differences are the jewels of our “rich heritage”.
Who are the “Baptists”? Read more
When growing up we had this joke that would be told at our family reunions. The joke concerned our family name and how everyone used to be a Rogers until they started getting so sorry, then we made them change their names to Evans, Hunt, Smith, Johnson, etc. etc. etc. Thus, our joke was we were the good folks and others were the sorry ones.
In the previous post I expressed how church planting is being used as a pretense to change the name of the convention when there really is no statistical basis for a name change. After reading many of the pro-name change advocates and even those that desire to remain neutral, one thing is becoming very clear. The name change is based on various personal principles, this writer believes, is false at best and at the least includes an argument that is culturally discriminatory.
One of the main arguments being used centers around the word “Southern”. This argument implicates racism on a convention that was birthed during a dark day in the nations history that embodied a culture of slavery. This cultural dark period became even more accentuated during the civil rights movement.
Lest I be misunderstood, these two points would be well taken in the 1800′s and the 1950′s and 1960′s, but this argument in 2011 just does not have any statistical validity. When one moves within churches throughout the south one is hard pressed to find any serious person that holds to such views. Are there still pockets of racism within the more “family chapel” churches in the south? One would be a fool to believe racism in some form doesn’t exist. But there is also racism found, but not spoken openly about in all churches. Why would I say this? If it didn’t exist then where are the staff members of color in the mega churches promoting racial equality? The race argument of the
Southern Baptist Convention The Great Commission Baptistic Network is the egalitarian argument for the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. In the CBF one finds a promotion of women as pastors but one has to look hard to find CBF churches practicing their doctrinal position. It is the same among those who are pushing for a name change in the SBC and using “race” as a reason.
Does one find people that jokingly point to various cultural negatives? Certainly, just like North Carolinian’s call all the people that are purchasing the land in the mountains “half-backs”. Read more