This article, with minor changes, was originally posted at From Law to Grace. You can also find From Law to Grace on Twitter and Facebook. Sitting at the Baptist Convention of New Mexico's Evangelism Conference in Albuquerque last week, I was reminded yet again why I describe myself as an "Calvinist Traditionalist," someone who agrees with Reformed Theology (i.e., the Doctrines of Grace, TULIP, etc.), but who does not always strictly preach or practice in conformity with said doctrines and theology. Perhaps the clearest example of my own Calvinistic Traditionalism manifests itself when I … [Read more...] about John 3:16, Calvinistic Traditionalists & Evangelism Conferences
Table Manners, the BF&M, & Majority Practice
Who has better table manners? That question once again comes to the forefront in Southern Baptist life following the release of a recent survey on Lord’s Supper practices among SBC churches conducted by Lifeway, an entity of the Southern Baptist Convention. While some found the survey results to be surprising and still others, including Voices' own Jared Moore (agreeing with the Kentucky Baptist Convention's Executive Director, Paul Chitwood), passionately circled the wagons around close/closed communion, my own observation is that these results reveal what many believed to have been the … [Read more...] about Table Manners, the BF&M, & Majority Practice
Phoenix Pastor Jailed Because He Flouted the Law!
The following post, originally published at From Law to Grace on August 7, 2012, has been updated to include additional facts and information pertinent to this case. After Christians came out in droves to eat some good fried chicken at Chick-fil-A this past week, a Phoenix pastor and his lawyers apparently thought that Christians would also rise up (i.e., donate money) to defend the rights of all Americans to have a Bible study anytime and anywhere — existing zoning, building, fire, and safety codes be d***ed. Both the pastor, Michael Salman and his lawyers, John Whitehead and Nisha … [Read more...] about Phoenix Pastor Jailed Because He Flouted the Law!
Blogging, Baptist Battles & Burnout
Originally published at From Law to Grace on June 11, 2012 Who would have thunk it. My mom has become a Baptist blog fanatic. A lifelong Southern Baptist who is in her late sixties, my mom began reading my blog several months ago. From there, it did not take her long to find the SBC blogs -- as in Voices, Tomorrow and Today. That's a good thing, because she has not had anything new to read on my blog in the last 3 1/2 weeks. On Saturday she commented that I hadn't published any new articles as of late. I told her I had taken a break from blogging (more on that in a minute) and … [Read more...] about Blogging, Baptist Battles & Burnout
The Proliferation of “Yes Men” in the SBC!
This post was orginally published on Howell's blog, From Law to Grace. Yes Man: a person who agrees with everything that is said; especially: one who endorses or supports without criticism every opinion or proposal of an associate or superior (Merriam-Webster Dictionary) Throughout recorded history, we have always had "yes men" (and women too), those people who simply refused to ask any questions -- much less the hard questions -- of those in leadership. Given our human nature, that is completely understandable. After all, who wants to be seen as "difficult" or "divisive?" Those who … [Read more...] about The Proliferation of “Yes Men” in the SBC!
SBC Name Change: Silence of Elder Statesmen is Deafening
"There arises defining moments in our personal lives, our churches, and our denomination. I believe we are at one of those crossroads. In the final analysis we must trust our process, our common goal of bringing the Gospel to the world, and each other." Who was the Southern Baptist statesman who uttered these words and what was the context within which they were said? None other than Dr. Jim Henry, former Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church of Orlando and a former two-term President of the SBC, in his endorsement of the GCR. During his tenure as President of the Convention, Dr. … [Read more...] about SBC Name Change: Silence of Elder Statesmen is Deafening
Grassroots Guide to Understanding SBC Spin Doctors
Originally published at From Law to Grace on September 23, 2011 Its exact origin is uncertain, but spin doctor is often used to describe public relations experts as well as political or corporate representatives (emphasis added) whose job it is to put a 'positive spin' on events or situations. ("What is a Spin Doctor?") Before most grassroots Southern Baptists (including me) became aware of SBC President Bryant Wright's un-constitutional end-run around the messengers and churches that he was elected to serve, Twitter was all abuzz Monday night with tweets about the "unofficial" Name Change … [Read more...] about Grassroots Guide to Understanding SBC Spin Doctors
Female Pastors & Graceless Responses in Mayberry!
Originally posted at From Law to Grace on Friday, August 5, 2011 After spending Thursday night in the cool-weather environs of Ruidoso, NM, nestled in the Sacramento Mountains, the heat of Alamogordo has perhaps got me in a contrary mood. With limited time on the internet, I'm just now catching up on some of the latest news in the nation and in our Baptist world at large. I couldn't help but notice a piece at Associated Baptist Press written by Norman Jameson, "NC Association ousts church with woman pastor." As I read the article, I began to think that some Baptists simply lack that … [Read more...] about Female Pastors & Graceless Responses in Mayberry!
Sharia Law: Constitutional Menace or a Religious Freedom?
Originally published at From Law to Grace When you hear the words, "Sharia Law," what immediately comes to mind? If you said an Islamic legal code that is incompatible with the laws of our nation and states, you would probably be in "good" company, at least in Oklahoma. Whether or not you would be 100% correct is debatable. I must admit that when I hear "Sharia Law," I do not have a positive dispostion toward this Islamic code. I suspect this is the case with many people, including many Southern Baptists. Our reticence in allowing Sharia Law to be used AT ALL in the United States … [Read more...] about Sharia Law: Constitutional Menace or a Religious Freedom?
Can a 2x Adulterer Be Elected President?
Originally published at From Law to Grace on May 12, 2012. NO WAY!!! If conservatives want to see Barack Obama become a one-term President, they will not rally behind former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. Nominating Mr. Gingrich would all but ensure the re-election of one of the weakest Presidents in our nation's history. Now, let me tell you what I really think about Newt Gingrich's decision to seek the Republican nomination for President of the United States. Mr. Gingrich may have been the brilliant politician and tactician behind the Contract for America which led to the Republican … [Read more...] about Can a 2x Adulterer Be Elected President?