Coming out of last week’s meeting in Louisville I feel more optimistic about the future of our convention than I did this time last year. I have a new found respect for Johnny Hunt, a deeper understanding of the decision making process, and reasons to look forward to next years get-together in sunny Orlando.
However, as I remarked in my last post, there are still two things that I am thinking about. I will leave the SBC/Acts 29 cooperation aside until a later date, and instead focus on what I find to be is the most perplexing question in Southern Baptist life today: why are there still seeds of animosity towards Calvinism in many corners of the SBC?
This to me is an even more pertinent question since much of the animosity seems motivated by misunderstandings of Calvinism and caricatures of bastardized forms of Calvinism which are nearly if not totally non-existent in today’s church. And don’t just take my word for it. If you were at the convention then you no doubt witnessed Morris Chapman’s “report” in which he lauded the sovereignty of God and yet chimed that man must still share the gospel for men to be saved– a point directed against Calvinism and yet to which no Calvinist would disagree. Or what about the dear messenger from Florida who asserted that the gospel for Calvinists is different than the gospel for non-Calvinists and that Calvinism tears apart churches, associations, and families (!) ?
Let me be clear, I do not believe that non-Calvinists in the SBC are ignorant. I do however wonder why they seem so misinformed about Calvinism? My wife and I were discussing it and we drew a parallel between this and the attitude that many take towards racism. We know the stereotypes are false, we know Calvinists that are soul-winners and solid theologians, and yet we pretend like they are the exception to the rule and carry on with our fear and prejudice. Why?
Please discuss this. I know there are plenty non-Calvinists on this message board. I honestly want to know. Why are so many people in the SBC afraid of Calvinism?