Archive Monthly Archives: May 2012

The BioLogos-Southern Baptist Theologian Dialogue:
The Evolution Debate

May 27, 2012

The “Southern Baptist Voices: Teleological Arguments, Theistic Evolution, and Intelligent Design” debate regarding creation and evolution between Southern Baptist scholars and Christian scientific scholars from BioLogos continues. The Southern Baptist scholars favor creationism, progressive creationism, or intelligent design; while the BioLogos scholars favor theistic evolution. Baptist Press has published two recent articles have been posted about this debate (article 1, focused on Dr. Keathley’s articles’ and article 2, focused on Dr. Dembski’s articles)

The format for the debate is that the Southern Baptist professors wrote articles and submitted them to BioLogos in January. The BioLogos scholars are now responding article by article. So far, Dr. Ken Keathley of Southeastern Seminary has posted two articles on “Expressing Our Concerns: Part 1, and Part 2), with two response articles from BioLogos scholars (Reply 1 and Reply 2), and two articles by Dr. William Dembski of Southwestern Seminary on “Is Darwinism Theologically Neutral?” (Part 1 and Part 2), with three responses by BioLogos scholars (Response 1, Response 2, Response 3). You are invited to participate in the discussion in the comments after these articles.

Other Southern Baptist scholars who have contributed articles for the series are Dr. John D. Laing of Southwestern Seminary; Dr. Bruce Little, Dr. John Hammet, and Dr. James K. Dew from Southeastern Seminary, and Dr. Steve Lemke from New Orleans Seminary. To find the continuing series, go to and click “The Forum” tab. From the Forum home page, click the “By Series” choice on the menu on the right, and choose “Southern Baptist Voices.”

Two previous SBC Today articles have more information on this debate – article 1 and article 2.

The Number One Failure of 90 Percent of Pastors

May 26, 2012

By Joe McKeever, Preacher, Cartoonist, Pastor, and retired Director of Missions at the Baptist Association of Greater New Orleans.

The four-year-old who says, “I can do it by myself” has a lot in common with the typical pastor.

Pastors are notorious for their lone ranger approach to ministry. It’s what I call the number one failure of 90 percent of pastors. They prefer to go it alone.

Even Jesus needed a buddy. “He came to the disciples and found them sleeping, and said to Peter, ‘So, you men could not keep watch with me for one hour?'” (Matthew 26:40)

Sometimes it helps to have someone nearby, praying, loving, caring, even hurting with you.

The word paracletos from John 16:7 is translated “Comforter” and “Helper” in most Bible versions. The literal meaning is “one called alongside,” the usual idea being that the Holy Spirit is our Comforting Companion, a true Friend in need. And each time that word is found in the New Testament–John 14:16,20; 15:26; 16:7; and I John 2:1–it always refers to the Lord.

However, here’s something important.

While paracletos does always refer to the Lord in those scriptures, the word parakleesis (also a noun), for comfort or consolation, may refer both to the work of the Lord in our lives as well as the effect we have upon each other.

Don’t miss that.
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Reforming the Deacons (Part 3):
Interpreting the Qualifications by the Spirit

May 25, 2012

By Joe McKeever, Preacher, Cartoonist, Pastor, and retired Director of Missions at the Baptist Association of Greater New Orleans.

Read Part One Here.
Read Part Two Here.

There’s a danger in interpreting the Word of the Lord “by the Spirit and not by the letter of the law.”

The danger is that strict constructionists, who love their legalism and exclude anyone who thinks otherwise, will accuse you of not taking the Word of God seriously. (This I know from experience. I’ll go online and see where some article from this website has been ripped to shreds by a preacher who accuses me either of not knowing the Word or caring little for it. I try to respond kindly, but almost never get a response. The preacher loves his unloving tirades more than his brethren, thus violating John 13:34-35.)

“(He) has made us adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter, but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.” (II Corinthians 3:6)

The letter kills. That’s what legalism does as soon as it comes to interpret the Word. Putting their strict interpretation ahead of the believers involved or the particular circumstances the church finds itself facing, legalists end up misrepresenting the Lord, abandoning the people who were looking to them for light and help, and painting themselves into an uncomfortable corner.

The Spirit gives life. This refers both to the Spirit of God as well as a spiritual interpretation of His Word. It is the Holy Spirit who gives us a spiritual interpretation of Scripture.
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