#SBC22 Day One (Pt 2)

#SBC22 Day One (Pt 2)

Today was a lot. We celebrated and prayed for 52 IMB missionaries as they head to the mission field! We heard incredible reports of missionaries starting new churches throughout our country through NAMB. 

The Sexual Abuse Task Force delivered their report and presented two motions to the messengers for a vote. 

Motion 1: That the messengers to the 2022 meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention approve the creation of an Abuse Reform Implementation Task Force (ARITF), authorized to operate for one year, to be renewable by each subsequent annual convention as needed. The ARITF is to be appointed by the president elected by the 2022 Convention, who will also appoint its leadership.

Motion 2: That the messengers to the 2022 meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention authorizes the ARITF, in coordination with the Executive Committee, to create a “Ministry Check” website[7] and process for maintaining a record of pastors, denominational workers, ministry employees, and volunteers who have at any time been credibly accused[8] of sexual abuse[9] and who have been or are associated with a cooperating Southern Baptist church or entity. The website will be established and maintained through an independent, qualified firm, selected by the Credentials Committee in consultation with the ARITF and to be funded by the sexual abuse reforms allocation.

The messengers of the convention voted to do these motions. There was some objection to them, but overwhelmingly the messengers were in favor. For the entire task force motions, click here:

SBC Presidential Election: 

Via Baptist Press, “Texas pastor Bart Barber won a run-off election for president of the Southern Baptist Convention Tuesday (June 14) evening at the Anaheim Convention Center in California. Out of 5,587 votes cast, Barber received 3,401 (60.87 percent), and Florida pastor Tom Ascol received 2,172 votes (38.88 percent). Fourteen ballots were disallowed.

A run-off election is required when a candidate does not garner 50 percent of the vote. In the first election, Barber received 3,258 (47.58 percent) of the 6,847 ballots cast.”

Credentials Committee on Removing Saddleback Community Church over ordaining women as pastors. 

The credentials committee initially recommended that we form a task force to examine the word “pastor” in the BF&M. The goal was to identify the intent of using the word pastor. Does it refer to the sr leader, or is it sound to use it for other ministerial positions, including those women hold? 

The response from the messengers was strong. Some were for it, but the majority in the room seemed surprised by the moment and quickly opposed the direction the SBC needed to go. 

But after the response of the messengers of the Southern Baptist Convention, in particular the word from Dr. Al Mohler, they have now rescinded their original motion and recommendation. They will revisit the issue as a committee.

As I said, today was a lot. We did it all. Our younger kids went to Giant Cow, Hannah spent the day with us, we connected with friends, made some new ones, and learned of many ways our church can make a difference in Tupelo, MS, and Lee County, MS.

I ended the day with the @9marks guys again. I always appreciate their state of the SBC night, and this was it. Below is a little glimpse into what was said during the session. This is a small cross-section of pastors representing a 

 swath of pastors in the SBC. Here are a few snippets from the platform. 

Question: Why do we need denominations? 

“To reach the unreached.” – Matt Chandler 

“Encouragement, resources, equipping.” – Omar Johnson 

“We don’t need them, but we need relationships. Churches should know one another… as we see in the NT.” – Aaron Menikoff 

Question: How would you describe the state of the SBC in one word? 

“Mixed” – Mark Dever

“Hopeful” – Danny Akin 

“Divided” – Aaron Menikoff 

“Shaky” – Matt Chandler 

“Struggling” – Omar Johnson 

Question: What State of SBC today compared to 10 years ago? 

“Less hopeful” Mark Dever

“Never thought we would be here where we are today. (Not in a good way, but spoke of the good happening in seminaries and many churches.) This current moment is play school compared to the ’80s (paraphrased).” – Danny Akin 

“We have experienced a vacuum of leadership, and we have an inability to make headway.” – Aaron Menikoff

“I thought we had a shot ten years ago; today, I don’t. We have brutalized emerging and young leaders. There’s no significant drama today. Backroom conversations have left me tired.” – Matt Chandler 

“I think we are struggling to know what we will be about and prioritize.” – Omar Johnson 

“I’m kind of where Matt is… some of the same conversations. But I can’t help but find hope in the future. We don’t have to do this, so we can be creative in ways we cannot be with the local church. I’m kind of excited to see what might happen. That’s good.” – Mark Dever

My thoughts… 

The group in the room tonight wants to see biblical churches, led by biblical leaders, accomplish a biblical mandate to love the Lord and mission to reach the lost. 

But, the continued drama and posturing for platform leadership over the last few years is beginning to grate on the nerves and ministry of many pastors. There is a desire to partner with like-minded churches to accomplish a mission bigger than anyone, and that desire keeps the door open and the flame of hope alive for many.

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