I have received word that Bart Barber is going to be nominated by Pastor Steve Gaines as First Vice President of the SBC next week in Houston. I heartily and enthusiastically endorse Bart for that position and think that if he gets elected in spite of my endorsement, he will do an excellent job.
But I have to be honest – he really annoys me, for two specific reasons.
1) When I agree with him, I often find myself thinking I wish I’d said it the way he did.
2) When I disagree with him, he is even more annoying, because he argues with unique perspectives and insight that is frustratingly difficult to refute. I was discussing an issue with him once and thought I had settled on the perfect argument. He would see my point, bow to my logic and agree with me. Alas, no such luck. He responded with a point out of the blue and I realized he had me. That’s really annoying.
So, when I agree with him, I am often jealous and when I disagree I am intimidated.
But don’t let my personal struggles affect your vote. I would give you the following reasons why Bart would make a great convention officer.
1) Bart is thoroughly Baptist, in a good way!
Bart is a convictional Baptist who knows as much as anyone about how the SBC works. When I have questions about SBC life or polity, there are two people I ask. Bart is one of them. He is devoted to the Word and to Baptist theology and practice.
His recent posts on the positive things in the SBC are among our most tweeted and shared posts in SBC Voices history. They articulated a positive and hopeful view of the SBC. Bright, committed young(ish) Baptists like Bart give us great hope for the future.
2) Bart exemplifies the spirit of the Calvinism Committee Report.
Bart is not, to my knowledge, a Calvinist. But no Calvinist ought to fear Bart’s influence in the SBC. He wrote a great article at his blog a couple of months ago which delineated those doctrines that we hold in common in spite of our disagreements which we spend so much time discussing. He has already been living out the ideal that the Committee set.
3) Bart is not ambitious for such office.
Frankly, I’m surprised he agreed to stand for election. I think he’d make a great officer, but he does not seem the self-promoting type. I do not know who approached him on this matter, but I am imagining that he had to ask Bart several times before Bart agreed to serve. He is a man of honor and character, who seeks to serve.
I could go on, but I am getting ready to leave early Saturday morning for Houston, so I need to wrap this up. Suffice it to say that Bart Barber is a great choice for First Vice President of the SBC. I do not know if anyone else is running for the office, but it would be hard to find a better candidate than Bart.
I will stop here, because I don’t want this post to become long and dull (that’s an inside joke.)
So, let me ask you who are going to be messengers at the SBC this year to consider voting for Bart Barber as First Vice President.