I am not saying this to defend or to criticize David Uth. If I were president of the PC, I would not be doing some of the same things he is doing this year. Oh, if I didn’t have an agenda such as the one we used back in 2017, I would enthusiastically invite Vance Pittman to speak. Jimmy Scroggins should do a wonderful job. There are others that I am not as familiar with and I might make other choices.
- The chances of me inviting someone to do spoken word poetry are about the same as me performing an interpretative dance to the song “Oceans” during the conference.
- I am very much not a fan of the kind of preaching exemplified by one speaker who uses Game of Thrones and a play on Victoria’s Secret as themes. Sorry, I do not see how that is helpful.
- While I personally look forward to listening to Jim Cymbala, I might have avoided some of the interdenominational, especially Charismatic flavor – just because of the divisive nature of some in our convention and knowing how they would squawk about it.
And squawk they have. Honestly, from some circles of Twitter, you’d think David Uth invited three Jehovah’s Witnesses, an atheist, two Mormons, and Joel Osteen to speak. People’s faith will be destroyed by a two-day conference.
Evidently, at the upcoming Executive Committee meeting, the “take the ship” mentality is hitting the ground running. Several have tweeted about trying to pressure the EC to force the Pastors’ Conference to change their lineup – refuse them space or withhold funding or some such pressure tactic.
I plead with the Executive Committee not to give in to this pressure, not to break decades of precedent, and not to interfere with the Pastors’ Conference.
The last thing the SBC needs right now is the SBC Executive Committee asserting control over the Pastors’ Conference. We do not need any ministry or network to set itself up as the theological gatekeepers of the Pastors’ Conference, deciding who can and who cannot speak. The Pastor’s Conference has operated as an auxiliary to the Convention as long as it has existed and theological nit-pickers taking control with the assistance of the Executive Committee will not be helpful.
If You Don’t Like the PC
It is all so unnecessary. There are options available to those who do not like David Uth’s PC choices.
- Don’t attend. Last year the Founders ran a conference that directly competed with a very fine lineup of speakers at the 2019 PC. There are always other options.
- Run for president. Don’t tell me it’s impossible to win! Find a candidate who reflects your views or will at least select an acceptable slate of speakers. The PC elections are open. I do not believe anyone ran against David Uth.
- Express your disagreement and dissent, in a kind and edifying way. Dissent is as Baptist as immersion.
Attempting to assert power and control over the PC is a bad choice. This would be an unprecedented power play. The Executive Committee should not interfere in the Pastors’ Conference. There are other remedies and we do not need draconic moves such as this to please small groups of people.
I encourage the Executive committee to have the good sense to say no to the pressure tactics of theological bullies. I encourage my brothers and sisters in the SBC to stop, take a breath, and ask yourselves is this is the direction we really want our convention to head.
At the risk of overdramatizing things, the EC must be careful what it does here. Beware of giving these groups an inch, because they seem to want to be rulers.