David Platt is MY new IMB President

The International Mission Board is reporting that Dr. David Platt is the new president of the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. I had opposed his election. He now has my support. Here’s why:

  1. According to our system, I had my say. The trustees had the opportunity to give full consideration to the questions that I raised. I trust that they did so. I do not regret having raised these concerns, but I respect our system of polity. I freely acknowledge that the trustees had access to more information than I had. More of them favored his election than opposed it.

  2. The very critique that I made of Platt requires that I support him now. This is the way that our system is supposed to work. You engage yourself in the process. You advocate vigorously for your point of view. Together we Southern Baptists come to a decision. Unless the decision is so bad that we cannot follow Christ and abide by it, we coalesce around the decision that we’ve made and we move forward for the sake of our Great Commission task.

    From the bottom of my heart I urge any of you who have talked about cutting your CP support if Platt were elected not to do anything so reactionary and foolish as that. If you were to reduce your support of the CP in reaction to this decision, in my mind you’d be putting yourself into the exact same category as the critique that I made of Platt. Please don’t do that.

    Instead, do what I said that Platt hadn’t done. Get involved in our polity. In good faith, help us to make decisions and appoint people even better than we have done so in the past. Don’t disengage; do the hard work of consensus building and peacemaking for the cause of the Kingdom.

  3. I’m committed to making my initial post about David Platt a self-unfulfilling prophecy. If I still worry that the man most responsible for rallying us all to support the Cooperative Program is not someone all that committed to or passionate about the Cooperative Program, then guess what that means: I just have to do more myself to promote the Cooperative Program in order to make up for it.

    Southern Seminary exists today because four men agreed among themselves that “the seminary may die, but we will die first.” If just four hundred Southern Baptist pastors were to make the same commitment regarding the Cooperative Program, I don’t think any power on earth could stop us.

    I neither storm off from this election in protest nor throw up my hands in hopelessness. Rather, I simply acknowledge that a task lies before us and I put my hand to the plow. I hope you all will join me.

    If Cooperative Program support was not considered important in this season of Southern Baptist decision-making, let us make certain that it will be in the seasons to come.

Comments

  1. Dave Miller says

    I was about to contact you, Bart, and say you needed to write a post like this. Then, I thought I should check the post list and voila, there it was!

    Great words. May your tribe increase and your spirit spread like a virus.

  2. says

    Bart, I agreed with your criticism and I agree with your follow up. I lead my church to support missions and the cooperative program because through it we are supporting kingdom work beyond what we could do alone. Not because I agree with everything the leaders do. While I disagree with David Platt on a few things I believe completely that he is my brother in Christ and has a heart for missions. I will support him with my prayers and support the IMB with cooperative giving. Maybe once he sees first hand the power of cooperation he will lead more in that direction in the future.

  3. Ethan Moore says

    Excellent response, Barber. Great, great job.

    I’ve talked with IMB friends who are all over the map on this. Most seemed thrilled that we have someone in office now. The second largest group is thrilled (re: highly ecstatic) at the choice of Platt. Coming in third place is a segment that says, “Well, I don’t think he’s a great choice, but he’s ours now, so let’s pray.” And there are just a few who are angry, though I doubt they would do anything so base as to hope he fails.

    Let the hopeful be not disappointed at Platt’s mistakes, and the angry forgiving of the same.

    • Dave Miller says

      “Let the hopeful be not disappointed at Platt’s mistakes, and the angry forgiving of the same.”

      Amen. And amen.

  4. Roy says

    This was the best hire the IMB could have ever made. David Platt has sound theology and doctrine while having a heart for people!

  5. Kevin says

    If my church takes a Brook Hills approach to the IMB and cooperative program their would be none. Why when I go to conventions and association meetings I am told to up my churches giving percentages while many SBC leaders do the opposite? Just tired of hearing what we should do instead of folks leading by example. Concerned young pastor.

    • says

      Maybe this will bring the needed change in BH’s approach and others will follow. No question Platt has a heart for missions, and I’m sure will seek God’s guidance every step of the way of this appointment.

      • Kevin says

        Jennifer I agree on that, very mission focused for sure. I just don’t want to hear anymore about challenges to our church when we already send 21% plus special offerings to mission efforts. Its the small churches that are keeping this boat afloat. I will pray that this move is a good one, I want us all to make a difference in this world for Christ regardless of our theological camps or ideals. May the Lord of Heaven and Earth show us the way.

    • Eric says

      Of the $481 million given to the CP in 2011-12, only $96 million (20%) made it to the IMB. If you add in the North American Mission Board’s portion, it is only 29%. The church of Brook Hills obviously wrestled with the stronger emphasis on missions being funded in North America rather than a global effort. Since 2011-2012 the CP has made clear steps to further committing to global missions which led to the church of Brook Hills (and many other) to reaffirm these steps by giving to the CP more generously. With David Platt as new president there is little doubt that the partnership will be focused on reaching the nations, allowing churches to give freely to God’s redemptive plan for every people, tribe, and tongue.

  6. Bob Browning says

    Thank you Bart for your well-stated position and display of unity. I pray that my former pastor exceeds your expectations and that we are all united in Christ for the sake of His name.

  7. Pastor Jack says

    I was digesting the post, “Maybe the SBC Isn’t for You.” Thirty-seven years, SBC university, two SBC seminaries–“Maybe the SBC Isn’t for You.” I am getting old and I don’t have a lot of time left. I want to see souls saved. When I think of David Platt and all the polarizing pontifications he has spoken and look at the number of baptisms in his 5500 member congregation, that is of more concern to me than his giving. His church baptized the equivalent of 2 people in a typical (average) Baptist church. It seems he really does NOT believe in using the sinner’s prayer!

    Another concern is: why the secrecy? Why not vet the candidate in some fashion instead of “springing it on the body” like a surprise birthday party?

    I personally do not think Platt will create polarization and division in our Convention. I think he is the product of it.

    “Maybe the SBC Isn’t for Me?” Maybe it is. One thing I do know–I am getting too old to be indecisive. People are dying and going to hell and I have to do more than send money to this organization or that; or, be involved in this controversy or that.

    This gives me a lot to process.

    Just A Pilgrim, Jack

    • Max says

      Pastor Jack – I resemble all your remarks. Thank you for speaking your heart on this issue – many agree with you. Debating is not preaching the Gospel. Time to get back to His business … one soul at a time.

  8. D.L. Payton says

    Dr. Bart
    Very good words, the kind of which has made our convention great in days past. My pastor son (not reformed) is elated at the election. I am sorely disappointed for the reasons stated by many. However for me the past is past. What ever Platt has done that I feel is wrong is past tense. It is time to see what he does in the future. If he takes us to where we need to go then I cannot see that there is a problem. So I will support him hoping that we go to new heights.

    As far as bypassing the IMB is our giving: that should not be on our radar because of the selection of one man. As long as the IMB remains committed to the GC and the authority of scripture it deserves our support. I echo your plea, please do not bypass IMB in your giving.

  9. says

    I wonder how the Calvinist crowd would have reacted if Ergun Caner, or Peter Lumpkins, or Rick Patrick had been picked to be the new IMB President? Well, that’s how it feels to many Non Calvinist people about Platt being picked. Can yall understand that?

    David

      • says

        I think they would not have been happy, at all. And, we’d all be hearing about it all over Facebook, Twitter, and in their blogs. C’mon, let’s be honest.

        David

        • Bill Mac says

          David: Those were my own reactions, not what I think the general reaction would be. If I had to guess on the reaction of Calvinists in general, I think RP would fare the best and EC would fare the worst.

    • Tyler says

      Well, all I know about Lumpkins is that he hates Calvinism. That’s all he talks about. So I really wouldn’t feel comfortable about him because I don’t know anything else about him. David Platt does not hate Traditionalism. And I know much more about him than his soteriological view. Just my two cents.

    • Tyler says

      Well, all I know about Lumpkins is that he hates Calvinism. That’s all he talks about. So I really wouldn’t feel comfortable about him because I don’t know anything else about him. David Platt does not hate Traditionalism. And I know much more about him than his soteriological view. Just my two cents.

      • says

        Tyler,

        Peter Lumpkins does not hate Calvinists. Can you find one statement of his to prove that? Just one.

        Also, you’re proving my point about Platt. Just as you would have huge problems with Lumpkins being Pres. of the IMB, due to his standing against Calvinism, so many Non Calvinists have a huge problem with Platt…..do you not remember some of Platt’s statements of the past about “asking Jesus into the heart,” and on a sinner’s prayer? Is he not the darling of the Calvinist crowd?

        So, I see that you understand the angst of the Non Calvinist crowd in the SBC at this appointment.

        David

        • Tyler says

          Hates Calvinism, not Calvinists. My point is that all I know about lumpkins is his view about Calvinism. With Platt I know a lot more. Platt. He talks about marriage, culture, missions, religion, and theology. Lumpkins seems to only talk about Calvinism. I want to hear his views on more than just soteriology. Then I would feel more comfortable about him being President. I would love for someone like David Allen, Patterson, or Yarnell to be President. They would have my full support! Sure I disagree with them about soteriology, but I know much more about them than that one thing. Hope that helps. Blessings! (By the way, I hope this is more of an encouragement for Peter. If it seems like I am slandering him please know that is not my intent.)

        • says

          David, I believe you have a confused category here. I have friends of a definite non-Calvinist persuasion who are fully on board with Dr. Platt’s critique of the utilization of the “sinner’s prayer.” Stop making his position on that subject an issue regarding Calvinism & Traditionalism. It just simply IS NOT SO.

          SolaGratia!

          • says

            Scott,

            I make it an issue, because it is one of the things that caused a lot of angst in the hearts of Non Calvinists about Platt….that, and the “Asking Jesus into your heart” fiasco. Also, I heard Platt say that if your Church is not personally going to an UNREACHED people group…on a mission trip 3 or 4 times a year type of thing….that your Church is not a true, NT Church. He preached that at an SBC meeting several years ago. I couldn’t believe it. But then, he said it, again. I thought…you’ve got to be kidding me. My Church is not a NT Church, because I don’t take my people on a mission trip 3 or 4 times a year to some UNREACHED people group….even though we pray for our CAREER missionaries, who are planting their lives in those people groups…even though we’re giving thousands and thousands of dollars to support missionaries….even though we go to Cincinnati and Honduras every year on mission trips thru our local Association….BUT, because we don’t go to some UNREACHED people group on a mission trip, then we’re not a true, NT Church????? What??? Seriously???? I mean, I know that Platt is radical, but c’mon.

            Also, Scott, I’ll say this. I, too, do not believe that someone is saved by saying a prayer. I do not hold with easy believism. BUT, I absolutely do NOT see anything wrong with helping someone to pray…to call on the Lord for salvation….a sinner’s prayer. If I have stressed REPENTANCE and FAITH in my sharing of the Gospel, then I am not leading people to Hell, just because I help them call on the Lord for salvation, or tell them to ask Jesus into their heart to be their personal Lord and Savior.

            Do you believe that I am leading people to Hell?

            David

          • Adam Blosser says

            “If I have stressed REPENTANCE and FAITH in my sharing of the Gospel, then I am not leading people to Hell, just because I help them call on the Lord for salvation, or tell them to ask Jesus into their heart to be their personal Lord and Savior.”

            David, you make a really good point here. I think this is the problem. I have witnessed too many times, especially at youth events, where an “evangelist” got up, told some funny stories, and then led people in a prayer to be saved. The gospel of repent and believe on the Lord Jesus was not shared.

            I have no doubt that you share the true gospel before leading them in a prayer to call on the name of the Lord. I am thankful for your commitment to the gospel. May your tribe increase.

            Platt’s comments probably should have been worded better in hindsight. Hindsight is 20/20 of course. He recognized a real abuse, rightly confronted it, but could have probably done so in a clearer way. We all are sometimes guilty of using strong language to try to make our point which often only leads to being misunderstood.

          • Tarheel says

            Adam,

            “We all are sometimes guilty of using strong language to try to make our point which often only leads to being misunderstood.”

            Speak for yourself! ;-)

    • Dave Miller says

      The flaw in your scenario here is when you use the derogatory term “The Calvinist Crowd” as if all Calvinists thought alike. That evidences a caricature of Calvinists, not an understanding.

      Get 5 Calvinists in a room and you are likely to have 5 (very strong) opinions about most things. They are not monolithic.

      The kind of conspiracy theory/takeover scenario often presented is why isolation is a bad thing. There is no “Calvinist crowd” marching in lockstep on anything.

      I talked to some Calvinists yesterday who had some serious concerns about the Platt candidacy.

    • Jason Sampler says

      David, the problem with your list is that none of those men are qualified for the position to which David Platt was elected.

      • says

        Jason,

        All of those men are just as qualified as David Platt is, and for you to say that is just a slap in the face to them, and to all of us, who are their friends. jason, are you a Calvinist? Do you hate Traditionalists?

        David

        • Adam Blosser says

          hahahaha

          David, none of those men are qualified and you know it. Neither are you, and neither am I. That doesn’t mean we or they are bad people. It just means we are not qualified to lead the IMB.

          • says

            Adam,

            They’re just as qualified as David Platt is.

            I admit that I shouldn’t be picked to lead such an organization. I’m not the man…that’s for sure. But, Ergun or Emir Caner, and Peter Lumpkins, and Rick Patrick are just as qualified as Platt.

            David

          • Jason Gray says

            Having a bombastic online reputation is not a qualification for…well, anything…maybe especially IMB President.

            I think it is better to focus our attention on supporting the SBC, the IMB, and the CP rather than on discussing other candidates and especially on tearing down the qualifications of Platt.

            Time to move on, fellas.

        • Pastor Jack says

          David,
          I can’t speak to the qualifications of those you mention–or, Platt for that matter. I don’t think Platt has demonstrated the kind of demeanor that goes far to build a team. The fact that he pastors a mega-church in the South doesn’t greatly impress me.

          Here’s my concern: how disastrous is it going to be if the fears expressed in regard to Platt prove justified? In my lifetime there have been three leaders at the Board (I think I remember them all). Some turned out to be controversial in an area, but none turned out to be unqualified. Thus, none were disasters.

          Usually, I’d take a “wait and see” approach. I don’t know if I am going to wait this time. I have contacts from my congregation doing mission work (not as missionaries of course) in China and they are very effective.

          Maybe it is time for my church to take a hard look at how we participate in missions. Even sacred cows eventually die.

    • says

      Ergun Caner has lied about his testimony so he is unqualified to lead the IMB. To have hired him regardless of his position on calvinism would have been a huge mistake. Peter Lumpkins spends all his time talking incoherently about a calvinist take over so I think he would not be qualified. I would not trust him to faithfully appoint IMB missionaries who did not have the same views as himself. To compare those people to David Platt is laughable. I am calvinist and yet I am not the biggest fan of Platt. But I do think that this is a good hire. I think his heart for world missions is evident and he will be a good president.

      • says

        Joseph,

        Ergun and Emir Caner, Peter Lumpkins, and Rick Patrick have a strong desire to see people, all over the world, get saved…..just as much as Platt. And, for you to call it laughable…to compare these men with Platt…says a whole lot to me.

        I’m glad that not all Calvinists are as narrow minded as some of the people, who comment in the blogs, and who write blogs….otherwise, I would think that Non Calvinists would not be welcome in a Calvinist controlled SBC.

        David

  10. says

    Good food for thought on Brook Hills actual support of the SBC here:
    http://www.baptisttwentyone.com/

    Better than the speculation provided elsewhere.

    For me take each head of an SBC entity from Platt to Iorg at GGBTS and I can joyfully say that they are MY guy. We are all united in our mission to share the gospel.

    • says

      Louis,

      Again, it’s not about how much giving to missions his church did. It’s about how much the church gave to the CP. And now, his salary will be paid by the CP. And, we’ll probably be hearing from him that our Churches should give more to the CP….to support missions…..whenever he led his Church to give such a small percentage to the CP.

      David

          • says

            David,
            I respectfully ask if you actually read the linked article? His church gives to the CP, the local Assn, Lottie and gives directly to both the Exec Committee and the IMB. Last year they gave 625K to the IMB combined and are projected to give over a million this year. So as a church he leads they put their money directly into use for the IMB, they send out mission teams, support missionaries in the field, he himself makes multiple mission trips abroad each year and via his books and The Secret Church he might be the best advocate for reaching the unreached living today. Obviously that last part is pure opinion but since he has lead his church in supporting SBC entities, I must ask where is the beef? Is the percentage not high enough? Adrian Rogers always said that dollars not percentages pay the bills.

          • volfan007 says

            Louis,

            The problem is that he will be paid with CP dollars, and his Church gave very, very little….a very small amount to the CP. And, if we all follow that lead, then the CP will die. There will be no more CP, and we can all go back to a societal type of giving. But, if that’s the way everyone wants it to be….well, let’s do it.

            Do you see that he will be paid his salary in CP dollars? And, he will probably be encouraging churches to give more to the CP to support missions, whenever his Church gave an extremely small percentage to the CP?

            Yes, his Church gave a lot to missions. Yes, his Church did a lot of mission work. Hallelujah! Amen! But, that’s not what we’re talking about.

            David

          • William Thornton says

            David, what do you make of the reality that only 30% of his organization’s funding is CP revenues and this is slowly declining while at the same time direct gifts and the LMCO are increasing? He didn’t cause this to happen. These are long running trends.

            There is no SBC leader, not even Frank Page, who expresses optimism about any future which includes CHURCHES making autonomous decisions to increase their CP percentages sufficient for the CP trends to reverse. This isn’t being driven by a few restless thirtysomethings but is across the SBC board.

          • Stephen says

            David, I think you are being misleading. There is no byline in the CP that says “$XX: IMB President” and no other money can be given to him. It would be just as accurate to say that the IMB President is paid by Lottie Moon offerings, which is an area that his church gave generously.

            Of course Platt could come out tomorrow and say that his new salary will be paid only be speaking fees + new book sales and he won’t take any missions funds.

            If you want to make the point that the IMB, as the organization that get the most total CP dollars, should be at the forefront in support of the CP for the sake of the other entities and ministries, then do that.

          • Volfan007 says

            Stephen,

            What I was always told is that 100 percent of Lottie goes straight to the mission field. None of it is used for salaries of staff or to pay the electric bill at IMB HQ. thus, CP dollars would pay his salary.

            David

          • says

            30% comes from CP, 59% comes from Lottie, 11% from other sources.

            http://www.imb.org/main/lottie-moon/details.asp?StoryID=11749&LanguageID=1709

            As such, it would be incorrect to say that the IMB president’s salary comes exclusively from the CP donations. It may be true, it may not, but it would be assumption. And if people are willing to cut funding to Lottie, or to the IMB through the CP, the fact remains they are only hurting the missionaries and the cause of the gospel.

          • Bart Barber says

            You’re missing the point that those funds are not all just dumped into the general fund. The salary of the president, I’m pretty sure, comes out of CP funding. The LMCO funding is designated to other uses.

            As to whether the cash is fungible enough that this is some accounting trick, I don’t know. But that has been the promotion point with regard to LMCO for quite some time.

          • says

            Dr Barber,

            Forgive me if your comment was not directed at me.

            If it was please be assured I am completely knowledgeable that LMCO monies go directly to the missionaries. My point however is that the IMB budget is not CP or Lottie only, there are other places they get their money from. Consider this, figuring just a 2% interest rate, if the IMB has 5 million in a savings account, the interest would be about 100k a year. I would doubt the total salary/benefits package for the IMB president would be greater than that. Perhaps, that is how the presidents salary comes from the 11%. We just don’t know. Making assumptions about it coming from the CP however is just that, an assumption.

          • Dean Stewart says

            We can split hairs as thin as you want in the SBC. It is true that not all of the funds the IMB uses for day to day operations come from the CP. SV points out interest that accounts draw as a source for their income. I would ask the question where did that money come from in those accounts? You will have a difficult time finding money in accounts that did not originate from the giving of local SBC churches through the CP.

            I spent a few weeks with our missionaries in Japan once. At the IMB orientation they told us that no money from the IMB comes into Japan, they could have said the entire pac-rim. The reason was our missionaries bought tons of properties after WW II on the cheap. Now those properties are rented and we have a fortune in funds in Japan. Because of charitable laws in Japan that money can’t be sent back to America for distribution. So there are funds that generate income for the IMB *but* those funds were generated by CP dollars.

            What does it matter? One aspect of Platt’s job will be to promote CP and Lottie Moon. He may be the best ever at doing this. Let’s give him a chance. Brook Hills does not meet the standard of giving that most of us would like to see (only those with eyes most blinded by Geneva will argue for BH as a suitable giving pattern for the SBC) but now that Dr. Platt is our president let’s see what he does.

          • Dale Pugh says

            SV–you really think that the president of the IMB will make no more than $100k per year? That salary level may have been true back in the early 90’s, but I’d think that Platt was offered quite a bit more than $100k per year for the job. We don’t know that, though, do we? SBC entities aren’t very forthcoming with such information. So all we have left is speculation…..and the fact that tiny churches like mine will continue to give to it and the LMCO in some small way.

          • Stephen says

            Accounting tricks aside, his church still gave a decent amount directly to the national SBC (and is increasing that amount this year according to B21) which I bet is counted exactly the same in the IMB budget as “traditional” state-directed CP giving. Regardless, the source of Platt’s salary is the least of his concerns as it should be ours, and we should focus on how we can help him further global missions.

          • Dean Stewart says

            Stephen, there are no accounting tricks that I am making reference to. I am taking the figures that were provided by Baptist 21. If my Father pastored a church with a 10 million dollar budget and gave $25,000 to the CP I would say his church is not the one to pattern our giving practices after.

            I realize you are a fan of David Platt, so am I, however, this is not the model I think the SBC should use. Regardless of what BH gives to Lottie this formula if followed by every church in the SBC would bankrupt everything but the IMB.

            I state again that regardless of BH practices David Platt is our president and we should pray for him and hope the best days are just ahead for the IMB. He is a man of immense ability.

          • Dean Stewart says

            Tarheel, that comment means the most obvious reason for arguing Brook Hills is a valid giving pattern for SBC churches to follow would be love their pastor and in turn sovereign grace theology. I can’t imagine anyone defending this pattern if they have no tie to BH or affection for DP and his theology.

            Many of us on both sides of this theological debate have shamefully defended positions we would never have defended otherwise except going to bat for our team.

          • says

            Dean,

            “Many of us on both sides of this theological debate have shamefully defended positions we would never have defended otherwise except going to bat for our team.”

            I think your on target here. For my part, as much as possible, I am not expressing support for Dr. Platt because of his Soteriolgy that I happen to agree with for the most part….I’m doing so because I think it’s important to unify around common agreement in the Gospel. I’d like to be able to undoubtedly say that I would likewise support The new president had he not been someone that I agree with on soteriology. Honestly though, I have to say it would likely depend on who that man was. There are some that I can think of right now in my head, that I will not name, that I would be 100% totally for and support even though I disagree with them…. And of course there are some, that I will not name, that it would be hard to publicly affirm, and a few more still, that I just absolutely could not affirm So, I’m trying to understand and be patient with my brothers.

            However, I think many Cals have expressed shared concern with many of the issues that have been raised about DP. Personally, I do wish that they had chosen someone who is more committed to the traditional Coopertive Program giving plan. I also before the election and I stand by it today, expressed a desire that a non celebrity be chosen, and also a desire that a “lightning rod “not be chosen. These wishes were not met in this selection – although I will say that I do not think the celebrity and “lightning rod” monikers are David Platt’s fault completely – (in other words I’m not sure he set out intentionally to be a celebrity, and I also do not think that he has intentionally set himself up as a “lightning rod” like so many others on both sides of the Cal/non cal issue have done)

            With all that said…

            The selection does provide us with the man who is a godly man, a man with the undeniable passion for the lost, a man who is proven himself to be a decisive leader, and a man who is widely respected around evangelicalism. Another benefit is, given his age, should he prove to be a successful president then we could have leadership continuity in the international mission board for many years to come.

            I am encouraged by the comments of great men, with whom I disagree on many things, like Dr. Bart Barber and Paige Patterson who have so publicly set aside their personal wishes and desires regarding a soteriological viewpoint in reference to this appointment and very publicly and strongly embraced a man with whom they still disagree but feel is tremendously qualified and is now the president of the IMB.

            Honestly, I’m excited about the appointment even though I had wishes that they go in a different direction I do think that they have chosen a man whose heart for the lost and the reaching of the nations is absolutely palpable….I’m convicted by that passion every time I hear him speak… I’m praying for him and hoping he has a tremendously anointed, fruitful and meaningful tenure at IMB.

        • says

          It is more nuanced than that. We are a group of free churches that believe working together and pooling resources (money) yields greater results for Christ than doing it alone.

      • William Carpenter says

        David,
        I’m afraid you are wrong. I predict he will call for churches to give sacrificially to Lottie Moon and directly to IMB causes like he led his church to do. I doubt he will give more than the occasional required lipservice to CP. I hope I am wrong, but I find it hard to believe Platt will have a sudden change in heart concerning CP now that he’s the head of an organization whose funding comes primarily from non-CP sources.
        I find myself aligned with Bart on this one. I thought it a poor choice for all the reasons he gave. I am disappointed. However, Platt is now my IMB president, and I will support him in that position.

  11. Rick says

    I love the choice of Platt but didn’t know this was anywhere on the radar. Were there other candidates? Is someone suggesting other candidates that would be better?

  12. Dave Miller says

    As of the moment of this comment, all further discussion of Ergun Caner on this post, and Peter Lumpkins, etc will be deleted. None of them was the recommendation of the Trustees, nor are they in office.

  13. D.L. Payton says

    With the election of Platt, my biggest concern is the future of the CP. I doubt very much that Platt will give any promotion for CP. Rather, will look at alternate ways of funding for the IMB. One of those ways is direct giving. I expect him to say a lot about direct giving and little about CP. Should that become a reality the other entities will need to follow suit and then there is a problematic situation that will ensue. Perhaps better stated from my bias a problematic situation, others will not see this as a problem. IMO the future of the CP is not bright.

    • Jason Gray says

      It is probably not best to assume the worst with regard to Platt and the CP. Why don’t we let him get on the job before we start to complain about what we think he might not do? Let’s give him the benefit of the doubt.

      That said, I think we constantly need to be re-evaluating our methodology, and the CP is not above reproach when it comes to efficiency and effectiveness. I think it is a bit naive of us to think that keeping the status quo with regard to the CP is the best for the future of the CP…and beyond that what is best for the CP isn’t even the end goal. The CP is a means to an ends.

      I have seen nothing in David’s character or ministry that leads me to believe that he will make unwise or rash decisions that will do damage to the entity which God has entrusted to him. So, let’s trust the trustees that made this decision, and more importantly let’s trust the Lord as He guides the SBC and guides Platt.

      • D.L. Payton says

        I am not making any judgement on Platt’s character. In fact just the opposite. I think he is a man of integrity. For that reason I cannot fathom him showing little regard for the CP as a pastor and now that he has this job switching because it would be politically expedient. He has too much integrity for that.

        Instead I see him casting the same vision as Pres. of the IMB as he did for his church, Namely leading churches to do a lot of hands on stuff and giving directly to mission organizations. If churches do this it will not be with new money it will be rerouted from existing finds, namely the CP. I am not saying at this point that this is good or bad. That is for another discussion. I am merely stating reality.

        • says

          Or, it could be that he will promote a both/and approach… This might be a good thing.

          Because I think we all agree that there are churches in the convention who do not give to the cooperative program but do lots of other missions – and I think they should do both.

          We also have churches in the Southern Baptist convention who give to the cooperative program and think that they’re doing missions and that’s all they didn’t that’s not right either – they should do both.

    • William Thornton says

      If my budget included about $100 million in CP revenues I think I’d have something positive to say about the program even though it is only about 30% of the total.

      The future of the CP hasn’t been bright for a generation and a half. That not David Platt’s fault.

  14. William Thornton says

    Platt has numerous statements on record through his books and speaking concerning the Great Commission, cooperative missions, and the Cooperative Program. Elliff has made fairly obvious intimations about funding mechanisms beyond Lottie Moon and the Cooperative Program. Many observers besides Platt have plainly said that the system by which most CP dollars stay in the legacy southern states is inappropriate in our day.

    I expect to see the CP supported by David Platt, our work would be unrecognizable without it; however, I see no changes possible to it that would bring the allocation numbers in line with what he understands to be the far greater call on us, the Great Commission.

    In due time, I suppose…we will see

    • Pastor Jack says

      William,

      I see your point and I think it is a strong argument. However, statistically the great lostness of the world is not limited to the borders of the U.S.

      There are more lost people in the U.S. than in all but a few foreign countries. Now, I understand that there is more to the metric of where mission dollars should go than that statistic, but somewhere along the line, if we are really concerned about the Great Commission we must face the crumbling base of the IMB’s support.

      Talking about fulfilling the GC and actually developing a strategy to do it–and beyond that motivating others to do it–is an important ingredient.

      Where has Platt demonstrated the spirit of soul-winning that it will take to reach a lost world? Books? Conferences? Using his church as an example for comparison, my church did five times the work of his church in regard to actual Great Commission work.

      Let me add quickly, my church missed our mission objectives in grand style so I’m not bragging. But, if the Great Commission is actually about “winning souls,” I don’t see how Platt qualifies.

      I have never seen a “management” approach to ministry result in much more than well-ordered furniture on the deck of the Titanic. I guess my point is: managing CP funds will not reach the world for Christ. I’m not sure the trustees asked the right question in order to get the right person.

      • Jason Gray says

        Pastor Jack,

        I don’t know exactly how to respond to your post.

        I am kind of curious of how you determine what Brook Hills did in comparison to your church. Do you care to provide the name of your church so that such claims can be evaluated and verified?

        I am also curious if you are familiar at all with David Platt and anything he has done and said. If you were, it would be a rather simple thing to see his passion for world missions.

        I think you might be a bit unfair toward both David and Brook Hills in that post.

      • Jason Sampler says

        “Where has Platt demonstrated the spirit of soul-winning that it will take to reach a lost world?” That’s one of the most ignorant questions I’ve ever read. I’m not calling you ignorant, Pastor Jack, but that question couldnt be more lacking in knowledge. Apparently you do not know David, which is not your fault. But to question his passion for sharing Jesus with others is ridiculous. I know him personally. We sat in seminary classes together and we served at the same church together. I don’t know anyone who shares his faith more regularly, more contextually, and more fervently, than David. I remember that he would spend at least one afternoon per week (if not more), passing out buckets of chicken and sharing his faith with homeless persons in the French Quarter. It was before he was famous, it was before he had name recognition, it was just who he was. The man doesnt need to ‘prove’ himself when it comes to evangelism.

        • Pastor Jack says

          Jason, thank you for referring to me as ignorant but then qualifying it in saying I only “sound ignorant.” I was not referring to Platt’s personal soul-winning as I freely admitted I don’t know him.

          I was talking about his track record of leading an organization (his church) to Great Commission Work. My argument, or simply a question, albeit an ignorant one, is: does he have what it takes to lead a world-wide movement to win souls?

          If his record at the IMB as such a leader is no better than his record at the pastorate, I think that is a legitimate question. Keep in mind he is a very strident Calvinist which would make some skeptical (though not me personally); and, keep in mind he made some very disparaging remarks about an evangelistic practice that has been used of God for centuries, if not millennia.

          I am personally a pretty active soul-winner (meaning of course sharing the gospel with the lost, as I don’t “win” anybody). In fact, 95% of our churches baptisms have been through my efforts–feeble and disappointing.

          My problem is: how do I motivate my church to embrace the Great Commission challenge. I have been more effective in the past than I am currently.

          So, forgive my “ignorance.” A church of 5500 that baptizes 100 is about 1.8% if my math is any good. This does NOT suggest anything about Platt’s personal evangelism, but his ability to inspire an organization to embrace it.

          And . . . anybody that subjects themselves to an “election,” does have a responsibility to prove himself to his constituents. As long as I pastor a Southern Baptist church–and one that gives twice the percentage of Platt’s church to Great Commission causes, then I feel I have a right to my opinion.

          It is just my opinion. Time will tell if Platt is the “man for the job.” Unfortunately, he could either be the Captain of a warship that sails into the enemies seas and takes captive the souls of men, or he may be the Captain of the Titanic.

          The fact that you know him personally makes it understandable why you would personally attack my opinion. I get that and I am sorry for not being more clear. That was my misstep.

          Again, this is nothing personal, eventhough Platt doesn’t seem to shy away from making some very “personal” statements about the evangelistic methods and efforts of others–some of which I take to have merit, others not so much.

          I hope I have made it clear that I was not talking about his practice of personal soul-winning, but his ability to lead a Great Commission organization.

          All we have is the record he has published (at least those of us who do not know him personally).

          • Pastor Jack says

            PS–Thank you for sharing that brief history with me. That goes a long way to affecting my opinion of Platt, whether it ultimately changes it or not.

          • Pastor Jack says

            PSS–About three days ago I was taking my “heart health walk.” I was listening to a “Classic Sermon” from the last 100 years. It was David Platt.

            I did not swoon over the message but it was OK.

          • Jason Sampler says

            I neither called you ignorant nor did I say you sounded ignorant. I said your question was ignorant. Ignorant=lacking information. Its a basic definition but fall too often people perceive it as pejorative. It’s not. Stupid is pejorative, but ignorant is not.

          • Jason Gray says

            Pastor Jack,

            Hold up a second, because I see an inconsistency in your criticism. I want to make sure I am reading you right, so please let me know. You said that you are “a pretty active soul-winner” and then made this statement to clarify what you meant: “(meaning of course sharing the gospel with the lost, as I don’t “win” anybody). So, if I am reading that right you judge the faithfulness of the task of “soul-winning” as actually sharing the Gospel with the lost because their response is out of our control. Am I understanding that right?

            If I am…then it seems unfair to then criticize the number of baptisms Brook Hills might have based on something that is out of their control. You don’t really know the faithfulness of their “soul-winning” because there is not a direct correlation with baptisms.

            For the record, I know PERSONALLY that they are a church committed to teaching, encouraging, and enabling others to share the Gospel. I know PERSONALLY of individual efforts of multiple Brook Hills members sharing the Gospel faithfully and consistently.

            The baptism numbers, by your own admission, do not determine faithfulness in “soul-winning”…sharing the Gospel does, and there are no numbers to indicate the job they are doing.

            With that criticism off the table…one has to look to the actual record of what the church is doing to spread the Gospel. The record is not just baptisms. The SBC has used only baptisms and budgets for years to determine church health and that has shown to be way off-base.

            What record does Brook Hills have?
            A record of churches planted and missionaries sent out from their church around the world. A record of a church that went from extreme self-centeredness to a church of sacrificial giving…maybe the most selfless I have ever been around. A record of a church going from sending no one to having a multi-tiered approach of sending members on short-term, mid-term, and long-term missions. A record of sending MANY couples and families to distant countries to reach UUPGs.

            The record is FAR greater than number of baptisms (again, which is not the measure of faithfulness, according to your own words) or budgets. I would encourage you to dig a little deeper before making pronouncements about things you lack the information/knowledge

  15. Roger Simpson says

    Regardless of who the past or future president of the IMB is the percentage of the total IMB budget coming from CP giving is shrinking. This is not just something that has happened in the last week. It is a secular trend that has been going on for years.

    For better or worse, many churches don’t like all the components in the “total package” that the CP entails — especially the expenditures of some state conventions. So they figure out other methods to fund the IMB directly — such as the Lottie Moon offering.

    Also, a growing number of congregations don’t just want to ONLY finance missions — they want to become personally involved. Platt, and others, are reflecting this trend by organizing trips that their members take to “do missions” not just pay for them. Viewpoints vary on some of this stuff but I think it is positive.

    The trips that people take to do various “short term” assignments (as well as activities where people go to various places in the world as Christians with specialized vocational skills) are the wave of the future. I think there is quite a bit of untapped potential here.

    Platt has led by example by demonstrating how to leverage the effectiveness of career IBM missionaries by having others help them who are not on the IMB payroll.

    I’ll leave it to you theologians to compare and contrast the fine points of Calvinism vs. non-Calvinism. While I’m hardly a Calvinist, adherence to the tenets of Sola Scriptura and Semper Reformanda sound OK to me. If you don’t like a particular aspect of some “brand of so-called Calvinism” then in the spirit of Reformed theology you should speak out and seek change. Calvinism (or more broadly Reformed theology) doesn’t hinge on how many petals of a flower from the Netherlands you venerate.

    The whole argument about Calvinism vs. Traditionalism is wearing thin. Especially at a time like this when we are on the cusp of ramping up energy to implement the great commission by adding a couple of new layers to the traditional model which has been largely based on missionaries on the payroll of the IMB.

    In summary, Dr. Platt is an excellent choice for IMB president. He represents the wave of the future because he has demonstrated a growth model for the IMB — namely partnering with various churches and consortia of churches to do specific projects.

    Platt leads by example. If CP is shunting dollars to do what many view as second tire operations then, he figures out a way to get the most “bang for the buck” for what he considers the main thing. Sounds like prudent management to me.

    The problem with CP is not with guys like Platt are marginalizing it. It is that CP is not keeping up with the times and it is now seen as spreading money too thin. To the extent that CP does a laser focus on first order stuff it will regain traction like the old days. In this day and age the old funding models and organizational structures are just not hacking it.

    That is why the apparatus at Alpharetta was drastically downsized. That is why — at least in some leading edge states — state conventions have scaled down their operations by offloading stuff to individual churches or consortiums of churches.

    Organizations don’t take the necessary steps to revitalize themselves absent some type of “wake up call”. In SBC life, cutting back on CP giving and ramping up Lottie Moon is one example of this wake up call.

    I think the jury is out on the future trajectory of the CP. Societal operations won’t become the order of the day if CP allocation model keeps in step with the times.

    Guys like Platt demonstrate the growing problem the CP has. If we had 100 more David Platt’s in SBC life [some of them would have to be state execs] we would have a different CP funding model and churches would be tripping over themselves to ratchet up their CP giving percentage.

    The BGCO sold its hospital decades ago. Here is Oklahoma we have donors who have made significant grants for capital improvements to Falls Creek. You can do a lot of stuff without tapping into the funding stream for foreign missions.

    Roger Simpson
    Oklahoma City

  16. Dale Pugh says

    While my hope was that the IMB trustees would choose someone with different credentials, I will continue to support the CP and Lottie Moon. I do so because of my own commitments to these two ways to support SBC cooperative mission efforts, not because of Platt or his church. I pray for the IMB’s success under his leadership. I would hope that he would step up to the microphone with a robust statement of his personal commitment to SBC cooperative efforts. He now has an opportunity to quell the wave of discontent that has arisen over his election. I seriously doubt that many of our people in the pews could tell you the names of IMB presidents past or present. I am not really sure that the person in the IMB presidency matters much to them as long as he does his job.

  17. Peaches says

    I think Platt is a fantastic selection. We are not a calvinist church and will be quite excited to see Platt in leadership at the IMB. He will be a powerful and effective voice for international missions. I am quite sure he is not the only qualified man in the SBC but that does not take away from my optimism that he is a great choice.

      • Bart Barber says

        If not, great nom de plume (or, perhaps nom de guerre?). I like peaches, especially in those Chick-Fil-A peach milkshakes. Mmmm.

      • Jason Sampler says

        Is Volfan007 your real name? What does it matter what his real name is? Let the man (or woman) be excited about his new IMB President without calling him out for signing on anonymously. SBCVoices isn’t the CIA. You don’t have to have high-level security access to get in.

        • volfan007 says

          Jason,

          Just take a deep breath and calm down. Nobody was calling out Peaches for signing on annonymously. I was simply asking a question…half joking….because, Peaches would be a humorous name. Now then, everyone knows that my name is David Worley.

          David

  18. Chris Griffin says

    Disappointed that no one has referenced the Baptist Prophet’s prophecy that David Platt would be the next IMB President from the comments section of the February post “The Next IMB President.” Someone called into question his being a prophet…clearly that was a mistake. ;) His post is #66. (By the way, I am not the Baptist Prophet.)

    “Baptist Prophet February 27, 2014 at 7:25 pm
    ‘David Platt will be the next IMB president.’ ”

    http://sbcvoices.com/the-next-imb-president/

    • Max says

      William Thornton may also prove to be a prophet with his reply to the post you refer to. As posted on February 27, 2014 at 9:09 pm:

      “…firestorm ensues.”

      • William Thornton says

        Well..maybe not. We will see. Look for the first state executive or editor to write a piece on his election and see what they say and how they say it.

    • Dean Stewart says

      Chris, it was an impressive “prophecy” by the BP – short and to the point. If you have the ear of the prophet ask him who is going to win the national championship in football. I might be able to underwrite a good deal of the IMB’s budget with that info.

      • Dave Miller says

        For the record, on that same post several other “prophecies” were made, all of which turned out to be false.

        Someone had to get lucky.

        • Chris Griffin says

          Dave,

          Right. I feel like I am fulfilling 1 Thessalonians 5:20-21.

          20 Do not despise prophecies, 21 but test everything; hold fast what is good.

        • Dean Stewart says

          Louis, this is why we as Southern Baptist have a divide that can’t be bridged. How can you pull for the Ol’ Ball Coach and his Presbyterian roots after the way he treated a fine Southern Baptist like Bobby Bowden accusing that Godly old man of teaching his players to hit late.

          For Duckman Dale, you do know that Bear Bryant’s widow moved to Eugene, OR following his death. She said after all those years in Tuscaloosa and the University of Alabama she wanted to get as far away from big time football as possible.

  19. volfan007 says

    I want to publicly say this. I have always believed in missions, because it’s the heart of God. And, I have always tried to get the Churches I have pastored to give as much as they can and are willing to give to missions. I have encouraged my people to pray for our missionaries, and we did that tonight, as well. Also, I have gone on mission trips, and I have encouraged my people to go on mission trips. And, I will continue to pray and support our missionaries.
    My Church gives 20% to the CP, and 3% to our local Association. Last year, we gave around $25,000 to Lottie, and around $14,000 to Annie….and, I do not Pastor a large Church. I don’t say this to brag, but just to tell some of you that we put our money where our mouth is.
    Also, I want to, again, say that I am sure that David Platt and Kevin Ezell are fine and godly men, who love Jesus. I’m sure that they’re fine fellas.

    I will continue to support our SB missionaries around the world, and here at home.

    David

  20. Todd Benkert says

    The two questions that remain to be seen are:

    1. Will David Platt lead an IMB that is open to Traditionalists, and affirms their work and contributions and partners with them in the global mission task?

    2. Will traditionalists continue to support the work of the IMB with Platt at the helm?

    I believe that the answer to both questions is “yes!”

    • Pastor Jack says

      Todd, do you mean open to accepting funds from Traditionalists, or open to honoring the long, evangelistic traditions of Traditionalists.

      He has spoken about his feelings on traditional approaches to evangelism in not so flattering language. His words and his actions as the pastor of his church just don’t line up.

      Why are you willing to follow someone who says, “Do as I say, not as I do?” That is the primary, though not only, issue I have.

      And, let me say that I have been reevaluating my approach to mission support long before this issue with Platt. It has hit a nerve and I understand I am reacting to it as such.

      But, nobody seems to address the fact that what Platt now says does not match very well with what he has said in the past, and certainly not what he practiced at his church.

      I would appreciate your wisdom in that regard. I have never identified myself as either Trad or Cal. Though some have identified me as Confused.

      I don’t want to grind an ax against Platt. My gut wants to continue to support missions vigorously as we have in the past. Our church is very much a CP giving church–especially Lottie Moon where our gifts have hovered at $100 per capita (or more) for well over two decades.

      So, I’m trying to find my place in this new game and Platt is simply an icon of this moment. I don’t know anything more about him than any other national figure. I am assuming he is a great guy and loves the Lord. That’s not my issue.

  21. William Thornton says

    Quote below re: Platt and the CP –

    **Platt was asked whether he will urge churches to give to missions through the Cooperative Program — Southern Baptists’ unified program of supporting missions and ministries — or encourage designated giving directly to the IMB. In response, he acknowledged a constant need to evaluate and improve CP but said it should continue to be “the primary economic engine that fuels” Southern Baptists’ cooperative ministry endeavors.

    “The last thing the SBC needs is a do-it-alone IMB that’s trying to in any way undercut the Cooperative Program,” Platt said.**

    • Pastor Jack says

      William,

      How can he say that with any moral force when he led his church to do exactly that which he condemns? It makes me tend to believe he is not saying what many would like the believe he is saying.

      Is “the primary economic engine” double-speak? What does that mean. Again, I don’t think it is a secret what Platt means, “primary for others but not for me.” How is that a healthy approach to cooperation?

      Maybe I’m just old, but it seems something has changed with Platt’s installation. I understand I could be wrong, but there is substantial evidence in the wake of Platt’s short rise to stardom.

      • Tarheel says

        condemns?

        Is there any evidence that Platt has condemned the CP? Or is that just more conjecture.

        Seems like some are now just throwing mud against the wall…hoping something will stick.

  22. Pastor Jack says

    Tarheel. I answered this objection but it did not post for some reason. Maybe it is chicken feathers clogging the upload line. I’m working at Chic-fil-A.

    You misunderstood what I said Platt condemns. REad the last two lines of Williams quote. Platt condemns, “not fully supporting the CP” according to that quote.

    I was pointing out that his words (according to that quote) and his practice look inconsistent.

    You are emotionally invested in this issue so I can understand how you reacted to the word, “condemns.” But, you got it completely backwards.

    I am not emotionally invested and do not make any personal evaluations of you because you disagree with me–I often disagree with myself.

    I have a problem fully supporting someone I don’t trust. I have a problem trusting people who say one thing and do something else. I don’t think this need be a fatal blow to my relationship with the IMB, but I think it is significant with much negative potential if swept under the rug.

    • says

      Lol….I didn’t read thorton’s before reading yours so I got the context wrong….see what happens when one makes assumptions without having the facts – maybe it’s a cautionary take for you. ;-)

      You think I’m emotionally involved in defending Platt’s selection? that’s funny because I was on record as not supporting a platt presidency before he was nominated even though I agree with him on lots of issues. I too have problems with his lack of cooperative program support as pastor of Brooke hills and have stated previously other reasons as well.

      But I do trust our trustee system. if I found my place find myself in a place where I truly don’t anymore – then I would have to consider whether or not I need to leave the convention or cut back funding – so I understand your concern and I wish you the best in your endeavors to decide what to do.

      I hope you choose to stay and fully cooperate in funding the IMB as platt leads them in his most oft repeated mantra …taking the gospel to the unreached.

  23. Pastor Jack says

    Tarheel. I answered this objection but it did not post for some reason. Maybe it is chicken feathers clogging the upload line. I’m working at Chic-fil-A.

    You misunderstood what I said Platt condemns. REad the last two lines of Williams quote. Platt condemns, “not fully supporting the CP” according to that quote.

    I was pointing out that his words (according to that quote) and his practice look inconsistent.

    You are emotionally invested in this issue so I can understand how you reacted to the word, “condemns.” But, you got it completely backwards.

    I am not emotionally invested and do not make any personal evaluations of you because you disagree with me–I often disagree with myself.

    I have a problem fully supporting someone I don’t trust. I have a problem trusting people who say one thing and do something else. I don’t think this need be a fatal blow to my relationship with the IMB, but I think it is significant with much negative potential if swept under the rug.

    • William Thornton says

      Jack, I’m not seeing the words “not fully supporting the CP” in the excerpt from Platt that I posted.

      • Pastor Jack says

        William, I never meant to imply those words were in your quote but reflected by the quote.

        It is no secret that Platt has not fully supported the CP in his practices. Russell Moore pointed this out in his piece on Platt, also.

        Also, the BP article from which you quoted says it asked Platt practice in regard to the CP. Interestingly, they never gave his answer. The part you quoted was given above the line where BP said it asked Platt directly.

        In Platt’s answer, even given above by you, it is equivocal. He has not stated emphatically that he does not agree with a church “by-passing the CP.” I read the article. I did not see this unequivocal pronouncement.

        In fact, his language in that regard looked a little evasive to me.

        That is the issue for me: reconciling what people say Platt feels about the CP with what his record shows. There’s a disconnect that will continue to haunt me until I get an answer.

        Perhaps when Platt feels comfortable he’s in to stay, he’ll provide an answer. But, I’m not holding my breath.

        I am not mistrusting Platt because he is a bad man–just a hu man. A am hoping to clear the air and move forward, or perhaps clear the air and move away. I personally have no agenda . . . yet.

  24. William Thornton says

    Here is one evidence that IMB needs leadership beyond accepting the status quo and maybe advancing it a little: IMB trustees approved a plan to put more 2 and 3 year, short term people on the field by requiring them to raise up to 50% or a maximum of $15,000 of their own support.

    I presume this means that the Journeyman program no longer fully funds personnel but requires them to raise some of their own support.

    I have mixed feelings on this.

    • D.L. Payton says

      Now if some missionaries have to raise their support I have to wonder just how many offerings and pleas for money a church will embrace. In one state in which I pastored if I took every offering I was asked to take it would average to be one a month. One sunday out of every four I was asked to take an offering. Not good!

  25. Pastor Jack says

    Along another line concerning supporting missions through the CP. I pastor a “typical” church: 80 to 100 in attendance. Yet, it is atypically generous to missions, especially Lottie Moon–$80 to $100 per capita. It also gives to the CP though I can’t remember the exact percentage at the moment. I am not sure which parts count and which don’t but I think it is somewhere around 14%.

    We also partnered to start a new work in another state for another small percentage, as well as a small gift to a state evangelist, and another percentage to a local mission organization.

    Our mission giving could easily support a missionary full time in a foreign land–one church, one missionary. In fact, we have family members from our church working as missionaries in China (not by that title of course). We also have a member from our church planting a church in the Arab Emirates (again, obviously not as a missionary).

    So, through the cooperative program it takes somewhere around ten church to fund one missionary, plus the huge Lottie Moon gift. Is this efficient and effective?

    Would my church benefit more by direct involvement with our two families working with unreached people groups? Right now, we give almost nothing but prayer support.

    I just don’t know if the CP is still effective or has become a sacred cow. I think this is an underlying discussion that has surfaced, at least for me, with the Platt issue.

    I have no intentions, or expectations, of changing anything in regard to the IMB, but the participation of my church. Platt was not my call and he is not my problem. He’s there to stay. I get that.

    What I agonize with, “am I there to stay?”

    • William Thornton says

      The CP is an increasingly inefficient means of carrying out the Great Commission. In the 20th Century it was an effective means for building a comprehensive denominational structure, which we needed. In the 21st Century it is more important for sustaining our legacy denominational infrastructures than in advancing the cause of the Gospel in a world increasingly divided into Gospel ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’. Look around at what the CP trends are, the lack of new vision for the program, and the difficulty of doing anything other than tweaking it.

      I think you will find the new IMB leader to be straightforward and forthright on these issues.

      • D.L. Payton says

        William T
        No doubt the CP is faltering. In what way was it efficient for the 20th century but inefficient for the 21st.

        • D.L. Payton says

          I agree that as it is now it is extremely problematic. However i am not as sure that it cannot be fixed as you are. A very conscious effort to clean up the waste at the state level as well as cutting needless administrative cost at both state and national levels would go a long way to do more than tweaking it. Granted it may be too little too late.

          • William Thornton says

            Another topic…but (1) notice that state conventions are moving towards what they call a 50/50 split which is actually more like 55/45 at the least. If this is done, and process is extremely slow and incremental, it means that in a decade or so IMB will receive another 4 cents of a CP dollar, hardly impressive, and (2) churches are giving less and less to the CP, a decline that started before Platt was born.

            I’m not seeing anything that indicates that the grand SBC advance for the 21st Century includes a push that pours huge additional sums into state convention budgets before IMB and NAMB get half and one forth of those sums, respectively. Makes no sense at all.

          • D.L. Payton says

            William T
            Last paragraph…I agree. However i wonder if at least in part that is because I see no effort to clean up the waste in spending CP funds. I see decreased budgets, but that is due to budget shortfalls not intentionality.

    • D.L. Payton says

      Jason
      You have a very generous church. Most churches 80-100 could not fully support one missionary. In some countries it would take 100,000 a year to fund a missionary when one considers salary, housing, transportation, health insurance, travel in the field and to and from the field, supplies, resources, retirement benefits and a myriad of incidentals.

    • Dean Stewart says

      Plodder, I believe the SBC may have just fixed their CP giving issues. David Platt is a gifted and qualified candidate to lead the IMB. An additional blessing that will come along with his skill set is that he is a leader of a new generation of pastors and churches who for the most part have not been very supportive of the CP. He himself has not been very supportive of the CP. He may be the catalyst that gets this generation of churches and pastors to come on board with the CP. We may be sitting here 5 years from now in amazement that CP giving has increased tremendously since David Platt came to IMB.

      • William Thornton says

        Dean, absent considerable change in the CP, I don’t see it although it is more possible that he will influence younger pastors to be involved in cooperative Southern Baptist missions.

    • William Carpenter says

      Plodder,

      I would enthusiastically support such a plan. I would be willing to tweak the numbers if necessary to get it to pass (tweak not drastically alter).

      I also agree with your reply to Stewart. I’m not optimistic Platt will end up being the catalyst to draw young people into CP. He will encourage them to be directly involved and to directly give, which is not a bad thing except that it will be done at the expense of CP.

  26. says

    Just trying to make sure it gets around to all the appropriate threads.

    Can I enter some context here?

    Let’s see what Dr. Platt ACTUALLY said, meant, and thinks about the sinners prayer.

    http://vimeo.com/70304249

    “There is nothing wrong with the sinners prayer in and of itself, I’m cautioning against abuse.”

    He also voted FOR the SBC resolution on NOLA Relating to the issue.

  27. Dale Pugh says

    Chris, your continued barbs, jabs, and atheistic pontifications are wearing thin. While it may be great fun for you, it’s of no value in these discussions.

    I realize that Dave continues to tolerate it, and that’s his right as moderator. I’m ready for a bit of respite myself.

    Dave, feel free to delete my comment if you think I’m out of line.

  28. Chief Katie says

    **Dave, if I am out of line here, I will respect your judgment on the appropriateness of this post.**

    Chris,

    Respectfully, you should stop posting all this negativity on SBC Voices because you seem to have nothing but disdain for our beliefs and our relationships with the Risen King. You don’t contribute anything to the questions/subjects at hand, and when you are able, you openly mock what we believe.

    I myself do not post much because this forum is best when SBC leadership tackles tough issues and anything I contribute isn’t especially helpful. Unless I am knowledgeable about certain factual things, it’s better for me to listen.

    I respect the people here even when I strongly disagree with what some might proclaim. I just have to wait because someone who shares my beliefs will post.

    I’m sure that if you approached any of these people with sincere questions, they’d be willing to dialogue with you from a Christian perspective.

    My cousin is Dan Barker from the FFRF, so I understand the goal of atheism. There are places for atheists and believers to hurl insults, but I don’t believe SBC Voices is one of those places.

    I’m asking you to stop being disruptive and to respect the believers who post here.

  29. Dave Miller says

    Chris, I’ve asked you to refrain from comments like this.

    I’ve been reluctant to moderate you, but you are forcing my hand. If someone writes a post about the absurdity of unbelief, or something like that, you can respond. You are free to inject comments on topics if you wish.

    But the next time you leave one of these kinds of petty, derogatory, attack comments, you will go on moderation immediately and permanently.

  30. Nick Horton says

    Challenging belief is OK. This is not the forum for that. As you well know denying the existence of God is offensive to Christians. I’m reasonably certain you know exactly how you are being insulting with your dismissal of those here who believe in God, and the God they believe in.

    You have made your choice. We have weeped and prayed for you. I am shaking the dust from my feet and moving on. Your blood is on your own head.

  31. Chief Katie says

    I’m asking you to stop being disruptive and to respect the believers who post here.

    The topic at hand is about David Platt and the IMB. You know that full well. Since you don’t believe what we believe you are purposely disrupting the topic. You certainly don’t have any financial interest in the topic and it would appear that you aren’t at all interested in international missions.

    I have a suggestion. Call up Dr. James White and challenge him to a debate er…. duel and get it out of your system. But be careful, Dan Barker didn’t fare well.

    If you don’t believe, you shouldn’t be disrupting a Christian forum. Try CARM instead. While it is a Christian site, they have forums for secular members and believers will come out of the woodwork to challenge you. You won’t be without friends, there are hundreds of secular members to cover your back.

    I spend my time as a classroom teacher and what you are doing is considered ill-mannered and rude.

    Non-believers are quite capable of showing courtesy to others.

    Correct me if I am wrong. Didn’t Dawkins support an effort to mock believers publicly?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uPqqp8KVuQU

  32. Dean Stewart says

    Chief Katie, as Zacharias said following Dawkins feel good tirade against Christians, “I challenge him to go to Saudi Arabia and challenge their religion.” Dawkins instructs his listeners to mock the religious publicly. He means mock the Christian. Dawkins will not go to Iran and challenge Islam. He in essence is bragging on the Christian community that he is comfortable enough to insult us and he will expect no repercussions. It is a compliment to the Christian community as is one feeling comfortable enough to come to a Christian blog and insult the One we worship.

  33. Tarheel says

    1 Timothy 4: 1 Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, 2 through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared.

  34. Dean Stewart says

    Chris, for a man who thinks he has above average intelligence surely you know that blaming the believer today for what was done in the past by Christians is just plain wrong and is not interacting with my comments whatsoever.

    You see, I live in the real world, 21st century and Christians do not kill, injure and blow up people who disagree with us. There are no such sanctioned actions you can cite in modern times. Because of your propensity to paint things the way you want to you will name some nut job who blew up a clinic in the name of Jesus as if he represents Christianity. All around this globe Dawkins would be decapitated for spewing his venom in the face of other religions. He is a coward and targets Western Christians because we are peaceful. He like you gets a thrill by insulting Christians, particularly in America.

    Are you insinuating that if you were not protected by the laws of America then Christians would act like Muslims around world and your life be in jeopardy?

  35. Dean Stewart says

    Chris, you speak of wanting reasoned discussions and claim the Christian is afraid of your wisdom and logic. However, when posed the question why is it Dawkins and yourself seemingly only take on Christians and not other religions you go back into history and say Christians are aggressive people. You don’t want to discuss the merits of Christianity vs. other religions in the 21 century. As for as our past, I remember when you were a reformed pastor you argued that believers did not sin when they were acting as government agents even if they set heretics on fire. Now you argue the opposite in order to paint Christians as evil.

    Chris, I will tell you why I think you are like you are – you are an apostate. Hebrews 6, II Peter, Jude and I John teach of the apostate. They are in a class unto themselves. They are not believers. They are not backsliders. They are not merely lost. They are apostate. When you peel back the layers of a backslider you find Christ in the heart. When you peel back the layers of a lost person’s heart you find a sinful nature. When you peel back the layers of an apostate you find Satan. You attack Christianity because Christianity is your adversary. Islam, Hinduism and all the other religions of the world are your instruments to ruin humanity. Christianity is your target. But we both know you don’t come to voices to convert us to atheism or even undermine one’s faith.

    I have a different reason why I believe you come to Voices. It is not to convert us to atheism. It is because you have no one else in your circle to discuss your ideas with. The most precious things I know are a pastor’s wife and his children. I suspect your nonsense is a source of embarrassment and shame to your family. I doubt your wife was converted to atheism with you so you come here to have someone to bounce your ideas off of because you can’t at home. I hope I’m right and your wife is a believer raising your children in the faith.

    Romans 16:17, 18 teach us to mark and avoid those who cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrines we have learned. He goes on to say that such do not serve the Lord. Mark is “skopeo” it’s range includes behold, to watch and contemplate. Avoid is from “ekklino.” It’s range include turn away, turn from, turn aside. Paul tells the believer to mark such as you and avoid them. You may now have our last word Chris, for I will follow Paul’s instructions.

  36. says

    Chris…. I know you are being facetious, but you would know better than anyone about the “strings” and “knockings”, you have probably used those lines along the way. But in reality, God is not mocked, …so your bleating is simply an emotional plea to be heard. You do better to stick to the atheist game plan and at least try to give some logic to your arguments. The current game you play, with slapping folks (like a 9 year old), and then running… tends to get old after a while.

    There have been a few times that your posts were a good logical argument. Not necessarily about what God expects from his followers, but more about a few government issues. Your familiarity with the SBC may be working to your disadvantage as you try to argue theology.

  37. says

    I have an idea. How about not allowing Chris R. to comment here on this Christian site. It is one thing if a self professing atheist who is also somewhat open to seriously discuss Christianity in a respectful manner wants to engage when the subject is appropriate. It’s another when a self professing atheist wants to comment here and make his foolish statements over and over in comment streams on other topics in mocking manners.

    Chris R. is in a very difficult place. He is filled with knowledge about the God he now denies. It’s head knowledge albeit. But knowledge nonetheless. His judgment stands to be greater. He’s harder than someone with less knowledge. The bible calls him a fool. But these are his choices made with his own enslaved will.

    We should all pray for him that God would obliterate his pride and arrogance and kill the old man Chris, making him a new man in Christ. But meanwhile, he has sufficient light to be on his own out there around the blogworld without hanging around here where frankly he has not the understanding to even engage most of the conversations here. He doesn’t need to stay here hurling his satanic barbs just so we can be Christian witnesses to him. He has plenty of witness in his head already. God can change even his hardened heart and save him.

    So, though no one asked me, I suggest Chris no longer be able to comment here and that he be given the opportunity to seek any of us out via email by contacting Dave should he want to engage in meaningful dialogue.

    That’s $0.02 worth.

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