Motions Introduced

Six motions were introduced,  3 by the inimitable Willey Drake.

1. Tim Overton moved a recommendation on tithing.

Might be out of order because it’s more of a resolution. Will get referred.

2. Wiley Drake moved we join with something called American Spring which is calling for impeachment of Obama.

Almost died for lack if a second. Will die in the program committee.

3. Alan Cross offered a motion asking the convention to authorize the president to appoint a task force to study the progress of racial reconciliation and make concrete proposals to further that cause.

This has a good chance of getting put on the program.

4. Bob Lilly moved that LifeWay sto poo selling the NIV2011.

I think this is 4 years in a row. DOA.

5. Wiley Drake moved we join with some group to celebrate racial reconciliation on the Gettysburg battlefield.

Likely referred.

6. Wiley Drake moved we discipline the church in Lamirada that gave approval to homosexuality. 

Out of order.  Article III already addresses that. We need not address it again. That church is no longer a cooperative SBC church.

It may be a sign of things to come in a potentially peaceful convention that only 6 motions were offered and the time for offering motions ended 20 minutes early.

Nothing explosive here.

Executive Committee Report

Frank Page is making the EC report. Not sure if the Article III recommendation will go forward now or later.

Word is that a very good compromise motion will be offered.  The EC listened to the concerns of the people. That kind of transparency and openness is what we need from all of our entities.


  1. Dean Stewart says

    Dave, we voted to have the 2019 convention in Birmingham, AL. I can’t help but think that was intentional. As our convention works to and is becoming more diverse Birmingham in 5 years may be a convention dedicated to celebrate those efforts in one of the places that was ground zero for civil rights battles. There will be a noticeable difference in the temp between Baltimore and Birmingham.

        • cbscott says

          Well, one thing is for sure. When the SBC comes to Birmingham, all you pitiful guys who never had the opportunity to be around real FOOTBALL will be able to say you have visited the place where the game was perfected and where it is played as real as real can get.

          Second, you will be able to say you have had the opportunity to eat real B-B-Q.

          • Tarheel says

            BBQ In Alabama? Bah…

            North Carolina BBQ is only found in NC and in some locations closeby. 😉

            Can’t argue with the football comment…though I wish I could.

          • Dean Stewart says

            CB, did you know Bear Bryant’s widow moved to Knoxville after he died? She said after all those years as a coach’s wife she wanted to be as far away from big time football as possible.

          • Dale Pugh says

            When you fellas get through eating your pig slop, come on over to Texas for the ORIGINAL taste of heaven–Texas BBQ! If you set a plate of Texas brisket on top of your head your tongue would beat your brains out trying to get to it!

          • Volfan007 says

            Boooooooooo to Dave…..if Coach Bryant’s wife wanted to move to Knoxville, then that tells you a lot. She probably joined in the chant “It’s great…to be…a Tennessee Vol!”

  2. Dave Miller says

    The proposal concerning Article III was adopted without discussion or d u sent. Most peaceful convention ever.

    • Jeff Johnson says

      Was it a “compromise” motion on Article III or was it the original proposal as discussed at length here on SBC Voices?

      • Jeff Johnson says

        Ok, I just saw Bart Barber’s tweet that the proposal was changed to require “close identification” with BF&M, not total agreement.

        • Andy Williams says

          Sorry If I’m missing something, but doesn’t that pretty much mean nothing, and accomplish nothing?

          • says

            It allows the convention to take an action on a church that gets too far afield.

            Technically, right now, Article III only allows dismissal of a church over endorsing homosexual behavior–if you read it strictly. That means you could have a church that stood against homosexual behavior but alternated between the Bible and the Koran still send money through the CP and send messengers to the Annual Meeting, if they called themselves a “regular Baptist church.” That’s a stretch, but it’s theoretically possible–until next year’s vote to affirm the change. Then you’d have a cause to boot that group.

            The system right now assumes that your church would not want to give/participate if they were not identified with the doctrine of the SBC. This formalizes that assumption.

          • Dave Miller says

            It has always been the convention that enforced this. Now, there is a clear basis on which to do it, when necessary.

          • William Thornton says

            If the standard is “close identification” with the BFM then the standard is by definite and deliberate wording not clear.

            The exec comm never made much of a case for this. I doubt they will offer more than they have this far.

    • says

      Committee on Order of Business considers each motion.

      Some are referred automatically to relevant committees or boards–

      Some are ruled “out of order.” These can either: tell a board what to do (can’t do that, board runs its operations) or be a resolution hiding as a motion (resolutions state an opinion or encourage others to action, motions commit the convention to do something.) Another thing that is “out of order” is telling a church what to do.

      Some are voted on at a scheduled time, if it is a viable motion. This year, Alan Cross’ motion about establishing a task force to evaluate our progress on racial reconciliation is the only 1 of the 6 that really could be voted on this year (I think). I expect, though, that there will be a reason to refer it to the EC for them to study it rather than appoint another group.

      I’d like to see it approved–a good, diverse committee to openly ask hard questions.

      • says

        “Some are ruled “out of order.” These can either: tell a board what to do (can’t do that, board runs its operations) ”

        So basically there is no way for an individual to effect change within the convention. And the convention itself cannot direct its boards to do things? Does this work only for boards or for institutions like a seminary? So there would no way to have a motion to direct our seminaries to only accept professed Christians without exception?

        Is there than anyway that the convention can deal with the issue of accepting muslims or mormons at our seminaries?

        • says

          The Convention itself may deal with like this:

          1. Vote to replace trustees who support it.

          2. Vote to cut funding, and then make clear funding gets restored if changes are made.

          While we see moments that make this seem absurd, it is absolutely valuable to insulate the institutions, boards, entities that need stability from the quick winds of a single annual meeting. Think about the NIV resolution a few years ago–quickly and with partial data, more than 2/3 of the messengers present voted to gripe about a Bible translation.

          Now, extrapolate from that: if that resolution had strong teeth, then immediately following one would have expected all boards, entities, agencies to completely abandon the NIV. Is that practical or wise? What if we take a quick vote on some other issue?

          So, while it’s annoying at times, it’s better than we think.

          If we need specific change at seminaries, the way to it is convincing or electing trustees that share the view. When the seminary reports, then a question can be asked of the President or Trustees to get at the heart of the facts, but (for example) the issue at SWBTS is still a trustee matter: did Dr. Patterson act with approval of the trustees? If so, then we need to consider this as we go forward in electing trustees. If not, then they have the responsible right to address it, not have 5000+ try to fix it at once.

  3. Bob Browning says

    So is there somewhere we can read the motions as they finally got proposed?

  4. Dale Pugh says

    “4. Bob Lilly moved that LifeWay sto poo selling the NIV2011.”

    “sto poo”???

    I would really like to see those words on Dave’s autocorrect. I’m sure there’s a story behind them.

  5. Stuart says

    Of the 6 from the morning, only Alan’s had a chance to get to the floor. Personally, I think the Committee on Order of Business took some liberty in referring it to the EC, as it was clearly worded to ask the President of the convention to do something, not the EC. I suspect the committee knew this, too, but figured no one would challenge the referral. Still, at least he got a conversation started.

    • says

      I should have challenged the referral. My mistake. It happened pretty fast and before I knew it, Rev. Luter had us affirming the decision to send it to the EC. I hope that they pick it up, but Stuart is right. It was not meant for them. It was meant for the president to appoint a diverse task force to make recommendations at next year’s convention to the messengers.

      We’ll see what the EC will do. I feel a strongly worded post coming on about why this is necessary. Let me just say that we are having a groundswell of participation from racial/ethnic minorities in SBC life. 52% of new church plants are ethnic church plants according to NAMB. 20% of SBC churches are now ethnic minority churches according to Lifeway from 2 years ago. But, when you look at our boards and entity leadership, the vast, vast majority is white. We need some mechanisms to bring leadership up from the churches and to represent better what is happening in SBC life. And, we need to see a way forward so that more of this can happen. We are getting there. We just need a bit of intentionality. Hopefully, the EC will see that. Like I said, I will make my appeal.

      • says

        I think there is room to believe that it will get the same degree of hearing from the EC as from the Pres., whatever that degree is.

        You are correct in that the ethnic church population is growing especially through church planting. I think we can expect change in representation to develop in the years ahead but as you say it will be slow. Thus intentionality would be good.

        For intentionally to happen some type of “mechanism” is going to look a whole lot like a quota system. That I believe will not be met with favor.

        Do you feel there is room to argue that the consciousness of those who cause this to happen is such that more ethnics will be appointed or is this wishful thinking?

        • says


          There is no need for a quota system because we already have a great number of people from racial/ethnic minorities IN the SBC right now. The reason why they are not moving into leadership the way that they could is simply because they are not known. So, the way to do to this is to create intentional ways of identifying emerging leadership. The way that people get selected/hired now is based on who knows who – so, there is a built in bias. It isn’t racial. It is relational. So, addressing this is not a “quota” system. It is recognizing that we have groups in the SBC that are participating but are not known by those in leadership they way that they should be.

  6. says

    As for the presidential election, I am praying for Ronnie Floyd to lead well and to bring people together in the SBC. I supported Kim, but that was not opposition to Floyd. It was simply a desire to see us continue to diversify our leadership and bring in new people from outside the South and from other races/backgrounds. Dr. Kim provided a unique skill set and experience.

    But, let me say this and I think that this is notable. You have Al Mohler nominate Ronnie Floyd in February and give his nominating speech at the convention and he gets a little over 1800 votes and 51%. You cannot get more establishment than Mohler presenting Floyd to the SBC.

    Dennis Kim was nominated by Dwight McKissic a month ago and gets 44% and 1400 votes. 250 of Floyd’s supporters swing to Kim and Kim wins. I supported Kim, but I would have been happy if he had gotten 30%. At the Convention itself, he was the one that people were talking about and were saying that they were supporting – and the support was broad from the people that I talked to.

    So, what does all of this mean? I am not sure, but my guess is that the new establishment that emerged from 2006-07 on and that crafted the GCR does not have the leadership mandate that they perhaps think they do. So, work needs to be done.

    • says

      The votes that were garnered by Moore were probably a vote against the mega church pastor the RF represented. If it had been a race between Floyd and Kim those votes would have gone to Kim. Therefore we would have had a close race.

      It does seem that things are changing somewhat.

      • says


        I agree. It is really incredible that Floyd/Mohler only got 51% of the vote in this election if you really step back and think about it. It used to be that the only ones even running were white, Southern, megachurch pastors with deep establishment ties. Floyd won, but the real story that needs to be explored is why was it so close?

        Honestly, I don’t think that it is anything at all against Floyd, per se. At least not directly. I think that perhaps what people are saying is that they recognize the need to grow beyond who we have been and the domination of the SBC by Mohler and guys like Floyd who have been on every committee and task force for years is coming to an end. That is a pretty huge story, in my opinion. We’ll see if it is just a fluke as time goes on, though. But, the numbers from this election were pretty significant.

        • Eric says

          The great Ben Cole, you old bloggers know who he is, made a similar comment on his blog Baptist Blogger, I saw the link on Wade Burpleson’s blog. It was interesting to read his words after all these years.

      • Tarheel says

        A little pushback here…kinda.

        I voted for Kim – but I’m at a loss to see his a vote for him could be construed as a vote against mega church pastors?

        Isn’t Kim’s church a mega church in that it’s active attendance is well over 2000 . He’s also a bit of a Insider too. Having served on many appointed committees over the years.

        Although neither of these are to the extent of Floyd.

        • says

          “Vote against” was a quick choice and probably not a good choice of words. I simply meant that those who would like to see someone other than well known large church pastors would have voted for Kim if not Moore. While he is pastor of a large church and has had some leadership experience he is not associated with what we identify as being in the loop or whatever.

          I do not think folks are opposed to large church pastors being president. I think the issue is; can someone be elected who is not a part of the establishment or whatever the PC word is.

  7. says

    Kim’s church is a large church, but not in the same way that Floyd’s church is. He has been involved, but is not the insider that Floyd is. His size/involvement is of a whole different level than Floyd. That is what I am saying.

    I am not saying that this is just a pushback against megachurch pastors. I am saying that it is the beginning of seeing SBC messengers becoming aware of the need to chart a new course and many of them recognizing that Al Mohler/others do not know how to get us there – or, that what he is articulating is not the most compelling future story.

    • Tarheel says

      Yea, I’m still thinking through this – I see your points Alan – just not sure I’m with ya completely on your analysis.

      Wouldn’t the messenger “call” for an Outsider, non connected candidate been reflected in votes for Jared?

      I’m thinking a (not the, but a) message here is that the messengers still tend to opt for “known quantities” and “established” presidential candidates, no?

      • says

        I do not think the Moore’s involvement is indicative of any mood of the convention. I wish to be kind. I do not know Moore. I am sure he is a fine young pastor. Herein is the issue. Moore has no marketable qualifications for such a position. He is inexperienced, by his own admission young, untried, non observable, and totally unknown.

        Because of this there was no way to determine his ability to lead the convention. It is risky enough when electing a well know person. Folks will not vote for someone they know nothing about.

  8. William Thornton says

    I think Alan is mostly right on the presidential election. There is a considerable degree of mega-fatigue and Mohler-fatigue in the SBC. The GCR committee was mostly megachurch people. Its time to move past the oligarchy.

    I thought Kim had a good chance of winning.

    • Tarheel says


      There is likely some Mohler fatigue….just as there is Patterson fatigue.

      Anyone around and out front as long as they are likely to garner that reaction.

      Also – you can continue calling me Tarheel or Dave is fine if you prefer. 😉

  9. Rick Patrick says

    I am with Alan on the issue of SBC leadership looking like our membership. I also disaffirm that this requires a *quota* system. Think about your church forming a Search Team or Special Committee. You want people from all ages, genders, ethnicities, etc.

    In convention life, this should also include big churches and small churches, established churches and newly planted ones, a wide geographical representation and the kind of theological diversity, in proper measure, that is representative of the denomination.

    It’s not a *quota* people–just good, solid, balanced and fair representation.

    • says

      Having the “goal” to be a diversely represented denomination is not bad. But when you start saying and enforcing the idea of “Sorry, we already have x number of y’s, you can’t serve now”, that is establishing a quota system. Just like in a true republican democracy, the people will elect the ones that best represent them. That is what we do in our denomination. People elect who best represents the denomination. And guess what, we have seen a increase in ethnic diversity. The church size diversity is harder because pastors of small churches, can’t afford to spend all the time required away that a VP, P, or trustee position would require. And as for theological diversity, well for several years now there have been voices against this grand “Calvinist” conspiracy, but every year at the annual meeting, nothing happens of it, for or against. Seems to me that the people of the convention don’t really care about theological diversity, they care about Godly leadership, something that they get from all sides within SBC theological diversity. You can yell all you want about the evil Calvinists on a blog, but until the convention votes and makes a decision, you basically are blowing hot air.

    • says

      I agree completely about the diversity of representation. However, I do not know logistically how to accomplish this without something that will look like a quota or at least a 2nd cousin to it.

      Do you think we at this point can depend on the natural evolution to bring balanced representation.?

      If enough people “call” for balance, would that suffice to bring balance?

      Those are honest questions. I don’t know.

      • Tarheel says


        “Do you think we at this point can depend on the natural evolution to bring balanced representation.?”

        I think so. After the early years – for a long time those SBCers with reformed leanings had no one (or few) “representing their views”….now there’s more – our “stream” lived through to varying degrees “drier lands” and so will yours. Although I’m not as convinced as others that there’s a “us” and “you”…we’re (all who embrace, love, and preach the gospel) on the same team just playing different positions – so to speak.

        I hardly think in 50 years that either orthodox “soteriological streams” we find ourselves swimming in will be dried up and gone.

  10. says

    One correction.
    If Pastor Kim had been elected, he would not have been the first SBC president from Maryland.
    That happened a little over 100 years ago.
    David R. Brumbelow

    • John Wylie says

      Thanks David Brumbelow,

      Another little tidbit that probably only civil war buff/nerds would know as well, during the civil war although Maryland did not secede they were still considered Southern and many of their boys fought for the Confederacy.

      • Volfan007 says

        In fact, Confederate Gen. Joe Johnston is buried in Baltimore at the same cemetery as Annie Armstrong….also buried there…John Wikes Booth….also buries there…the founder of Sunday School…John Healey.


        • John Wylie says

          Thanks Vol,

          That was interesting, it’s good to know that there are a few of us left.

          • Volfan007 says

            You are welcome…..another in interesting fact….especially for those who came to the SBC….Annie Armstrong was born near the Inner Harbor, and used to up on Federal Hill…the big hill looking over Inner Harbor…and there she would pray over the city of Baltimore.


  11. says

    From BP today concerning Paige Patterson and the Muslim student:

    4:16 p.m. — Paige Patterson, president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, said his seminary has a passion for reaching the lost and is experiencing unprecedented blessing.

    Southwestern’s online program is growing, its students and faculty are involved in personal evangelism, and its financial standing is firm with recent gifts totaling $13 million, Patterson said.

    A messenger asked Patterson for a “straight-forward explanation” of his decision to admit a Muslim student to Southwestern’s doctor of philosophy program. In response, Patterson told messengers, “I come to give you an apology. I owe the convention an apology,” especially to those for whom “I have caused sorrow, heartache or disillusionment.” He explained that a Muslim participant in one of the seminary’s archaeological digs in Israel asked to be admitted to Southwestern’s doctoral program. Patterson admitted the student and believes he is “very open to the Gospel.”

    Patterson said, “I made an exception to a rule that I assumed, probably wrongly, the president has a right to make.” The student is not funded with CP money, Patterson said, and has “not been a problem on campus.”

    Patterson said he also admitted non-Christian students to Criswell College when he was president there and those students came to faith in Christ. On judgment Day Patterson said he will have an answer for God regarding his decisions to violate admission policies at both institutions: “I violated a policy but I didn’t want to stand before You with blood on my hands. Dear God, I did the best that I knew how.”

    Steve James, chairman of Southwestern’s board of trustees, told messengers that the seminary’s trustees “have heard” messengers’ concerns and will discuss them at meetings in September and October. James asked messengers to pray for Patterson and the seminary.

    4:32 p.m. — Danny Akin, president of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, began his report by commending Paige Patterson. He said Patterson was the key leader in Southeastern’s transformation from a struggling institution to a Great Commission seminary.

    “Paige Patterson does not owe me an apology for his heart for lost people,” Akin said, referencing Patterson’s apology moments earlier for admitting a Muslim student to Southwestern Seminary.

    I appreciate Dr. Akin’s comments about Dr. Patterson.
    David R. Brumbelow

    • William Thornton says

      While I am satisfied with PP’s explanation (I presumed that institution heads had some discretionary admits), I’m a little uncomfortable with the ‘Judgement Day’ grounds for charting one’s own course relative to institutional policies. It looks too much like a claim of royal privilege to disregard policy. I note that PP admitted that he may have wrongly presumed discretion in the case.

      This case should be left with trustees at this stage.

      • Adam Blosser says

        “This case should be left with trustees at this stage.”

        I agree. I am glad the chairman came up after Patterson to say that the trustees would address the issue in the Fall. I also think there was an important part not mentioned today regarding whether Patterson threatened to terminate faculty over the issue. I plan to write a letter to the trustees to make sure they address that concern and determine what actually happened. I hope they find out that no such threats happened.

        • Doug Hibbard says

          Keep in mind, the trustees will likely handle it in executive session, and you, me, and the rest of the wide world won’t know anything about it.

          Expect this to be the final word: “The Trustees met in executive session to discuss the questions raised regarding admissions policy. Dr. Patterson remains the President with the full confidence of the board.”

          And that will be it. Not trying to be cynical, just straightforward–unless the board finds he specifically disregarded a vote or direction from them.

          • Adam Blosser says

            I will certainly believe them if they specifically say that Patterson did not threaten to fire faculty for whistle blowing over this issue. They need to address that accusation directly though.

          • says

            I wouldn’t expect to hear anything at all on that–

            Unless someone shows up with a document or recording that supports that statement, they’ll treat it as an unsubstantiated accusation. They’ll discuss it in executive session.

            Folks, we might as well move on about this issue: you will not hear anything else in the form of details. You will hear that the SWBTS trustees met, discussed, and affirm Dr. Patterson’s heart for the lost. Then, going forward, we’ll either see the official policy change the next year or a document showing the steps by which exceptions to policy may be granted.

            But you’ll see nothing about whether or not there were threats or an imposed silence. That’s my expectation. And either way, there’s nothing else that can happen until Columbus, whether we like the Trustee reaction or don’t like it.

  12. Tarheel says

    For clarity.

    Aikens comments did not excuse Patterson from anything….he simply stated what everyone in the SBC feels. No apology is needed for evangelistic passion.

    Frankly, Patterson’s obvious and admirable passion for evangelism is not what anyone is upset about.

    • John Wylie says


      Believe me I don’t want to argue with anyone about this and my view is probably very close to yours on this issue. However, knowing the politics of the convention, Dr. Aiken’s comment is obviously meant to put this concern to rest.

    • says

      Tar Heel, I agree.

      Odd that Patterson made a comment about Judgment Day which seems to indicate that he thinks he may have sinned. Of course, we know we are not to sin that grace may abound. What other sins justify spreading the gospel? Do we see such an approaching scripture?

      If violating admission policies is best for the greater good of the Gospel, it stands to reason that those policies should be rescinded altogether.

      Just thinking…

      • John Wylie says

        But Mark anyone who has worked with any educational administration knows that the administration always has some discretion concerning admission requirements. That’s even true in secular universities. Having said that, do I think we should be admitting outward nonbelievers to the seminaries, no, but I’m not in Dr. Patterson’s position.

          • says

            Thanks, John. I was just making observations based on Patterson’s comments. Not that you said as much, but I’m not calling for his job or that he acted outside the realm of his authority. Maybe he was within the bounds of his authority – I don’t know. The trustees are going to handle the situation.

            I’ve not read anyone who disagrees with allowing a Muslim enroll question Dr. Patterson’s heart for the lost. Oddly, breaking/bending rules should not bring one’s heart for the lost into question or vice versa. Yet, if rules are some how preventative for reaching the lost then maybe they need to be changed.

      • Dean Stewart says

        Mark, I disagree. To me, Dr. Patterson’s mention of Judgment Day was to explain why he admitted non-Christians to the two institutions who employed him thereby breaking their policies. He seems to be saying I broke the policies and admitted non-Christians because I knew I would stand before God and give an account and I didn’t want their blood on my hands.

        As wonderful as the SBC is I’m not sure an employee of the SBC breaking a policy is sinful before God. Does a secretary need to repent for coming back from lunch at 1:03 p.m. instead of 1:00 sharp like policy dictates? If he lied or practiced deception then certainly he sinned. For what its worth, I believe he erred in admitting the Muslim. He should not have. However, he has apologized. I wish all could be satisfied with that.

        • Tom Stowe says

          Amen, Dean. Just another case of spiritual vultures circling a potential carcass.

          • Adam Blosser says

            Good grief. I am not calling for Patterson’s head. I haven’t really heard anyone here call for his head either. If all he did was admit a Muslim student, then I appreciate his heartfelt apology today. If he threatened faculty with their jobs, that is a more serious issue that the trustees will have to address accordingly. I hope he did no such thing, and remains the president of SWBTS.

          • Volfan007 says

            Amen, Dean….and hearing the passionate, evangelistic heart of Dr. Patterson was a true blessing.


          • Dean Stewart says

            Mark, here is my best shot at quoting him, “I violated a policy but I didn’t want to stand before You with blood on my hands. Dear God, I did the best that I knew how.” I understood that as meaning the blood of the non-Christian students he admitted bring on his hands if he didn’t admit them. I in no way believe this justifies his actions. I think he was wrong in breaking policy in this instance. I simply believe PP offered a humble appropriate apology.

  13. Tarheel says

    I don’t completely disagree with that but at the same time Akins comment didn’t really address the issue of the objection to what Patterson. Did.

    • Tarheel says

      Nor did it or Patterson’s comments themselves address what is in my opinion the most egregious of concerns as to whether or not intimidation of faculty and students was levied by Dr. Patterson regarding silence the issue.

      • John Wylie says

        I understand Tarheel, I would guess that would all depend on what you mean by intimidation, because one man’s intimidation is another man’s leadership.

        • Tarheel says

          Yeah that’s why am content to leave it up to the trustees for their investigation. The chairman of the Board of Trustees came up after Patterson and indicated that there would be a full investigation of all areas of this fiasco.

  14. Dean Stewart says

    I have been attending the SBC conventions since 1986. The two most remarkable displays of humility I have seen with my own eyes at these conventions were when W. A. Criswell was honored at the pastor’s conference in Orlando for 50 years of service as pastor at First Dallas. He wept openly and said three words, “I’m not worthy.” Everyone wept with him. The second was today. I have never used Paige Patterson and humility in the same sentence. However, today he apologized to a messenger, to the messenger’s church, to his family, the faculty and staff of SWBTS and the convention. He admitted he made a mistake. He was ashamed that at the end of what he called the greatest convention he ever attended his actions by admitting a Muslim to SWBTS required he answer for hurting people. The trustees will do their job and deal with the issue in the Fall. If I would have been the messenger who questioned Dr. Patterson I would have felt mighty low after his apology and the convention’s reaction.

    Some will not be satisfied with Dr. Patterson’s apology. That is a greater indictment on them than Patterson’s admission of a Muslim says about him. It was a great way to end a great convention.

    • says

      I see enough potential discussion here to fill volumes. I agree with a lot of what has been said and disagree with a lot. I suspect that might be true of most of us.

      the Trustee Chairman made a request. If I understood correctly he ask folks not to talk to each other but to talk to God and ask his direction on the Sept and Oct meeting. That was the best statement of the day and one that should be honored.

      We have talked this to death already. Is it now time to pray for God’s guidance for the trustee and let them do their job. If we do not approve of their decision them we can vote to remove them next year. But until then pray is the order of the day.

      • Greg Harvey says

        I disagree with the request. Instead, we need independent investigations and perhaps an entity-wide reconsideration of the purpose of the seminaries given the twin scandals of the Muslim admission and the backhanded slap against the “Reformers” in the SWBTS report.

        Not to mention that the claim of Anabaptism sounds a whole lot more like Crimson Thread style reinvention than scholarship…though Estep’s efforts to correlate the Baptists to the Anabaptists was a serious scholarly effort. But the idea that a CR lion would align with Estep borders on silly given Estep’s open, vocal opposition to “bibliolatry” in his lectures. (And, yes, I’m talking about sitting in his class and hearing him talk about it.)

        • Adam Blosser says

          Yes, it does boggle the mind that a member of the Calvinism advisory group would refer to Calvinism with the words “compromised theology” and “truncated gospel” in his annual report to the convention published in the book of reports.

        • says

          While I respect your right to this opinion I feel you are reacting with your emotions rather than your mind. I fail to see the need to “reconsider the purpose of the seminaries” because you do not like one of the presidents. This is a little over the top.

          I think waiting for 3 or 4 months to give the trustees time to work is very reasonable especially if we spend that time in serious prayer.

          Let me be clear. I am not a Patterson fan. However (I do believe in the trustee system. Let’s let it work.

          re. you reference to Dr. Estep, i have 12 hours under him. My understanding of his “opposition to ‘bibliolatry'” is much different than yours, judging by the way you framed it.

  15. John Wylie says

    I must say that Dr. Patterson won me over with his report and answers. He presented a compelling case as to his rationale for doing what he did.

  16. Tarheel says

    I tweeted and I believe I said here but if I haven’t I’ll say it again. I believe that Dr. Patterson showed a tremendous amount of humility and I believe sincerely apologized I think he realizes that he may have overstepped he even insinuated that he may have acted wrongly or at least operated under bad assumption…. He can be forgiven for that and the trustees will handle whatever disciplinary action needs to be taken in regard to the enrollment of the Muslim student of which he claimed full responsibility.

    However as others have said there are other accusations out there regarding intimidation and threats of firings in ordering silence regarding the issue. That’s a different matter altogether and I presume we will get a report from the trustees at the appropriate time. The chairman of the trustees said at least twice they have heard you messengers and we will take this matter very seriously.

    • Dale Pugh says

      “However as others have said there are other accusations out there regarding intimidation and threats of firings in ordering silence regarding the issue. That’s a different matter altogether and I presume we will get a report from the trustees at the appropriate time. The chairman of the trustees said at least twice they have heard you messengers and we will take this matter very seriously.”

      I’ve asked it before, but I’ll ask it again: Will anyone have the guts to stand up and speak on this if it is in fact the case? If no one is willing to give witness to this as fact, then it is just rumor and gossip and should be treated as such. However, if two or three are willing to publickly state such, then Patterson should be reprimanded by his Board of Trustees. Such intimidation would, in my opinion, be worthy of severe penalty up to and including his removal from office. I’m NOT advocating such without a thorough investigation of the charges.

        • Tarheel says


          I personally am not witness to the events I live in Virginia not in Texas but several have posted on Twitter and other places and on their personal blogs that there is substantial accusation regarding intimidation over this issue …. this is why I said earlier that I am content To leave this in the hands of the trustees for their investigation.

          Should it be discovered that it is true I agree with you great punishment should follow for Dr. Patterson…. if it’s not true great apologies and public apology need to be made from those making and repeating the accusations.

          I am trying to be careful not to make the accusations however they are out there and I think they need to be either proven or disproven by a legit and spirit led investigation by the appointed trustees.

          I don’t think we can ignore the swirling allegations and just simply ignore them by calling them Gossip. Ya know?

      • says

        QUESTION: Is it your understanding that the board chair promised to investigate this issue or just the issue of admitting the student against policy. My read was the latter. I would like some help here.

        • Tarheel says

          My assumption is that, and I admit it is an assumption, is that implied in the promise to “investigate the issue” includes issues surrounding it. There is no need to investigate whether he broke policy or not…that is clear….he admitted it….he apologized for it…so the investigation would necessarily have to include surrounding issues – no?

          If I am reading that wrong, I bet I am not alone…and it might not be pretty in Columbus (that is not a threat simply an educated guess) if the investigation only covers and and re-announces what we already know happened and leaves other questions unanswered.

        • Adam Blosser says

          The board chair promised that the issue would be dealt with during their meeting in the Fall. He was not specific. That is why I plan to write a letter urging them to address this issue as well to make sure it doesn’t fall through the cracks.

          • says

            Thanks for your help. I simply do not know. My thinking is that the question and PP’s answer dealt only with the admission of the student. I don’t recall any mention of intimidation.

  17. Tarheel says

    Jon I encourage you to read Dr. Patterson’s report in the book of reports the printed one not the spoken one and see if his statements are in line with the unity task force that he sent on just last year.

    This is totally unrelated to the Muslim issue but it is completely related to the absolute and sheer disrespect that he publicly showed to anyone who holds a reformed position…. And that is not in keeping with the wording spirit or tone of the Calvinism advisory group.

  18. Bill Mac says

    Whatever you think of Dr. Patterson’s decision to allow a non-Christian to enroll, what do you think should happen now? I think a promise made is a promise kept. He should be allowed to remain and finish his studies.

  19. Aaron Arledge says

    Maybe one year I will attend the convention and make a motion that one certain person not be allowed to make motions.

  20. Ron West says

    What I would have liked to see discussed was why in the Book of Reports we see that the FTE enrollment in the last 3 years at SWBTS has gone from 1,734 to 1,497. Also why since 2006 the number of M.Div students has gone from 808 to 567. What does this say about the direction the seminary is going under Patterson’s leadership?

    • Stephen says

      This was discussed here a few weeks ago. One of the popular theories brought up was that in the past SWBTS has gotten a lot of students from the more eastern states but now the other seminaries have made their programs more viable and attractive.

  21. Ron West says

    Yes that is true. It was because of Southwestern’s solid conservative theological reputation and outstanding faculty.