WE WILL BE HAVING OUR REGULAR SUNDAY MORNING GATHERING AT 10:00AM! NO SUNDAY EVENING GATHERING

Photo by Call Me Fred

In this second talk from our Sunday evening series, The Southern Baptist Convention & Our Future, Pastor Adam Triplett lays out and summarizes our pastors’ main concerns for continuing our partnership with the SBC. While giving specific examples, he shows us how these things have been ongoing and the current direction of the convention is not leaning toward reformation and health. He closes the talk by highlighting why these things matter in the Kingdom of God. A summary of the talk is provided below.

INTRODUCTION: AIM & PURPOSE OF THESE TALKS

  • To review the good of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), while ultimately holding out a better way forward for our church.
  • Over the last three to four years the pastors of WPBC have come to believe it is most wise to depart from the SBC and pursue more fruitful partnerships with other churches and ministries.
  • These talks are given to persuade the congregation of this move from reasonable & hopeful standpoint, while also being honest and forthright about why we think this is best.
  • Main thesis of this talk: The situation within the SBC is the way it is because of decades of unhealthy, unbiblical churches.
    • “You shall know them by their fruit” (Matthew 7:15-20)
    • In the past three years the fruit has become very clear.

I. OUTLINING OUR MAIN CONCERNS

  1. Failure to Uphold the Word of God
  • Every problem held out finds its ground here, that the SBC has continued to be lead by men who have not stood on the Word of God when it has been hard and would have cost them people in the pews and dollars in their pockets.
  • God’s Word has not been taught in the seminaries or in the pulpits.
  • Discipleship has not been grounded in God’s Word, but the words of men and women.
  • This has lead to unhealthy and dying churches across the SBC landscape
  1. Low View of Membership & the Local Church
  • This is the opposite of who we are striving to be & other churches we seek to partner with.
  • For many churches, joining the local church doesn’t mean making a personal commitment, but is about getting the numbers up and the people in the door, which affects methods of doing so.
  • The local church is optional and the local church is more about entertaining different age groups and not about the proper worship of God.
    • 50K SBC churches, 15 million members, 4 million show up on an average Sunday.
    • No Church Discipline — “When discipline leaves the church, Jesus goes with it” JL Dagg
  • This leads to bloated membership roles & the marketing of topical/worldly sermon series.
  1. Decisional Regeneration & Spontaneous Baptism
  • All a person has to do is “make a decision”, “walk an aisle”, repeat a “sinner’s prayer”, meaning you often hear man-centered views of salvation (Examples: ‘Raise your hand’, ‘catch my eye’, ‘walk that aisle’, ‘did you mean that in your heart’)
  • This leads to churches full of unconverted, unregenerate members.
  • Baptism is not viewed as a solemn commitment b/n an individual, Christ as the head & the church as the body — but a personal declaration to be done with little input by pastor/church.
  • Examples: JD Greear, Johnny Hunt, Ronnie Floyd and the North American Mission Board’s marketing of materials for churches to have a spontaneous baptism week to do this.
  1. Ongoing Use of Emotionalism & Revivalism
  • Use of evangelistic methods that seek to drive up the emotional experience of the person, not that they would know and believe the gospel of Jesus Christ and repent of their sin.
  • Seeking to resource the church with things that will manufacture revival instead of taking up the Biblical means of grace (Baptism, Lord’s Supper, Preaching of God’s Word)
  • Example: The most influential churches in the SBC are full of emotionalism.
  1. Poor Leadership Understanding & Expectations
  1. Acceptance of Worldly Philosophies

II. WHY THESE CONCERNS MATTER

  1. This is a decades long rot that has not been addressed or dealt with in any meaningful way
  1. These situations have kept people away from our church and the church in general
  1. These things affect the witness of Christ to the world in missions and evangelism
  1. These things, in the end, do not glorify God
The Benefit of Partnerships A Better Way Forward