Archive for June, 2012

Dr. Tommy Green Tells SBC Today Why He Signed the Statement on Salvation



Dr. Green is Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church of Brandon, Florida, and has served as President of the Florida Baptist Convention and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Southern Seminary.


In an interview with SBCToday.com, Florida pastor Dr. Tommy Green related why he signed “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation.”

“First of all, I signed the statement not because of any political or divisive reasons. Nor did I affix my signature in an effort to be argumentative or elitist,” said Green, pastor of FBC Brandon, Fla.

Green also serves on the Florida Baptist Convention’s State Board of Missions, is former president of the Florida Baptist Convention, and has concluded in 2012 two consecutive terms as a trustee of Southern Baptist Seminary, Louisville, Ky., where he served as chairman for two years.

“I signed the statement because I believe it is representative of biblical salvation,” Green said. “It is consistent with my preaching, my teaching, and my personal faith and practice in ministry as I understand the Scripture, and is also consistent with the leadership I try to exert as a pastor.”

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A Commentary on Article Five
The Regeneration of the Sinner
of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”

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A Commentary on Article Five
The Regeneration of the Sinner
of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”


By Bob Hadley, Pastor of Westside Baptist Church in Daytona Beach, Florida, and Chancellor of Atlantic Coast Bible College and Seminary.


Article 5: The Regeneration of the Sinner

We affirm that any person who responds to the Gospel with repentance and faith is born again through the power of the Holy Spirit. He is a new creation in Christ and enters, at the moment he believes, into eternal life.

We deny that any person is regenerated prior to or apart from hearing and responding to the Gospel.
Luke 15:24; John 3:3; 7:37-39; 10:10; 16:7-14; Acts 2:37-39; Romans 6:4-11; 10:14; 1 Corinthians 15:22; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 2:20; 6:15; Colossians 2:13; 1 Peter 3:18

The Affirmation

One of the most difficult topics in the Scriptures is a clear understanding of the work of the Holy Spirit in the salvific process. It is clear that the Holy Spirit effectuates salvation; what is not so clear is the role the Holy Spirit plays in performing that process, especially where conversion is concerned. At the heart of this issue, is a term called regeneration. Regeneration itself is not an issue in question. The question with respect to regeneration is how it takes place, what it accomplishes and when it takes place. Article 5 addresses these questions.

The Gospel Is Available to Anyone

Statement 5 begins, “We affirm that any person who responds to the Gospel with repentance and faith is born again through the power of the Holy Spirit.” This sentence is very insightful in and of itself. There are two very important aspects emphasized in this statement. The implication is clear; first of all, “any person” may respond to the gospel message that is secondly, available to anyone and everyone. (Mt 24:14; Mark 13:10, 16:15; Gal 3:8; Romans 1:16) Any person, who hears the gospel message, may respond. This statement also eliminates any question with respect to an individual’s ability to come to God on his own. Salvation is always an individual’s response to God’s initiative. The word “response” by definition is passive to the initiative or invitation of another. In conversion, the initiator of this invitation is always God.

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Today’s Discussion Topic:
Article Six: The Election to Salvation
of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist
Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”

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Today’s Discussion Topic:
Article Six: The Election to Salvation
of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist
Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”

A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of the Plan of Salvation,” authored by Eric Hankins and others, has drawn strong interest in many social media and news outlets. The statement and the discussion of it have been accessed over 50,000 times and over 100,000 pageviews in the last two weeks. The discussions in SBC Today have evoked thousands of comments, with over 600 persons signing the document (including some key leaders from every level of Southern Baptist life). You can sign it also by following these directions.

To structure the discussion, we are focusing the comments on the affirmation and denial statement of one article of the statement at a time. Today’s discussion will address the Southern Baptist doctrines of grace in Article 6: The Election to Salvation. Keep in mind that each of the affirmations and denials in the articles complement each other, just as they do in the Together for the Gospel statement signed and/or affirmed by some Southern Baptist leaders who embrace Reformed views.

Please confine your comments to the article being discussed each day, not general comments about the statement. If you want to comment on other things, follow the links to other discussion threads:

Thank you for your comments on these theological issues!

The Editors of SBC Today


Click this link to see the full statement of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”
Right click to download
A Statement of Traditional Southern Baptist Soteriology SBC Today.pdf
Click this link to see the list of signers of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”
We welcome the signatures of all Southern Baptists who would affirm this statement. 

If you would like to add your name in affirmation of the statement, please email sbctoday@gmail.com, with the following:

Your Name, Ministry Position, Organization/Church, City, State

For example:
John Doe, Pastor (or Associate Pastor, Youth Minister, Deacon, member, etc.),
First Baptist Church, Anytown, TX
or
Joe Doe, Professor (or DOM, Evangelist, etc.), Seminary/College/Association,
Anytown, NC

We will be glad to add your name to this list of those affirming the statement!


Discussion of Article Six: The Election to Salvation in “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”

Note: As we discuss each article of the statement, today’s comments should focus on the affirmation and denial in Article 6. Please limit your comments here to Article 6.

Article Six: The Election to Salvation

We affirm that, in reference to salvation, election speaks of God’s eternal, gracious, and certain plan in Christ to have a people who are His by repentance and faith.

We deny that election means that, from eternity, God predestined certain people for salvation and others for condemnation.

Genesis 1:26-28; 12:1-3; Exodus 19:6; Jeremiah 31:31-33; Matthew 24:31; 25:34; John 6:70; 15:16; Romans 8:29-30, 33;9:6-8; 11:7; 1 Corinthians 1:1-2; Ephesians 1:4-6; 2:11-22; 3:1-11; 4:4-13; 1 Timothy 2:3-4; 1 Peter 1:1-2; 1 Peter 2:9; 2 Peter 3:9; Revelation 7:9-10

A Resolution on the “Sinner’s Prayer”
to be presented at the SBC in New Orleans, June 2012



By Dr. Eric Hankins, Pastor of the
First Baptist Church in Oxford, Mississippi


WHEREAS, God desires for every person to be saved and has made salvation available for any person who hears the Gospel (John 3:16; Romans 10:14-17; 1 Timothy 2:3-4; 2 Peter 3:9; 1 John 2:2); and

WHEREAS, A free response to the Holy Spirit’s drawing through the Gospel is both possible and necessary in order for anyone to be born again (John 3:1-16; Acts 16:30-31; Romans 10:11-13; 1 Thessalonians 2:13); and

WHEREAS, Prayer is God’s gracious means through which any person can communicate with Him and is everywhere in Scripture commanded and commended for every matter and every person (2 Chronicles 7:14; Matthew 7:7-11; Mark 11:17; Philippians 4:6); and

WHEREAS, Praying to God to express repentance for sins, to acknowledge Christ as Lord, and to ask for forgiveness and salvation is modeled in the Bible (Acts 2:37-38; Romans 10:9-10); and

WHEREAS, While there is no one uniform wording found in Scripture or in the churches for a “Sinner’s Prayer,” the prayer of repentance and faith, acknowledging salvation through Christ alone and expressing complete surrender to His Lordship, is the biblical means by which any person can turn from sin and self, place his faith in Christ, and find forgiveness and eternal life (Luke 18:9-14, 23:39-43); and

WHEREAS, It is biblically appropriate to help a sinner in calling on the Lord for salvation and to speak of Christ’s response to such a prayer as “entering a sinner’s heart and life” (John 14:23; Acts 2:37-40; 16:29-30; Romans 10:11-17; Ephesians 3:17); and

WHEREAS, A “Sinner’s Prayer” is not an incantation that results in salvation merely by its recitation and should never be manipulatively employed or utilized apart from a clear articulation of the Gospel (Matthew 6:7, 15:7-9; 28:18-20); now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the Southern Baptist Convention, meeting in New Orleans, LA, June 19-20, 2012, commend the use of a “Sinner’s Prayer” as a biblically sound and spiritually significant component of the evangelistic task of the church; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage all Christians to enthusiastically and intentionally proclaim the Gospel to sinners everywhere, being prepared to give them the reason for the hope we have in Christ (I Peter 3:15), and being prepared to lead them to confess faith in Christ (Romans 10:9), including praying to receive Him as Savior and Lord (John 1:12).

Today’s Discussion Topic:
Article Five: The Regeneration of the Sinner
of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist
Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”

">

Today’s Discussion Topic:
Article Five: The Regeneration of the Sinner
of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist
Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”

A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of the Plan of Salvation,” authored by Eric Hankins and others, has drawn strong interest in many social media and news outlets. The statement has been accessed over 30,000 times in the last few days. The discussions in SBC Today have evoked thousands of comments, with over 580 persons signing the document (including some key leaders from every level of Southern Baptist life). You can sign it also by following these directions.

To structure the discussion, we are focusing the comments on the affirmation and denial statement of one article of the statement at a time. Today’s discussion will address the Southern Baptist doctrines of grace in Article 5: The Regeneration of the Sinner. Keep in mind that each of the affirmations and denials in the articles complement each other, not unlike the Together for the Gospel statement signed and/or affirmed by some Southern Baptist leaders who embrace Reformed views.

Please confine your comments to the article being discussed each day, not general comments about the statement. If you want to comment on other things, follow the links to other discussion threads:

Thank you for your comments on these theological issues!

The Editors of SBC Today


Click this link to see the full statement of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”
Right click to download
A Statement of Traditional Southern Baptist Soteriology SBC Today.pdf
Click this link to see the list of signers of “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”
We welcome the signatures of all Southern Baptists who would affirm this statement. 

If you would like to add your name in affirmation of the statement, please email sbctoday@gmail.com, with the following:

Your Name, Ministry Position, Organization/Church, City, State

For example:
John Doe, Pastor (or Associate Pastor, Youth Minister, Deacon, member, etc.),
First Baptist Church, Anytown, TX
or
Joe Doe, Professor (or DOM, Evangelist, etc.), Seminary/College/Association,
Anytown, NC

We will be glad to add your name to this list of those affirming the statement!


Discussion of Article Five: The Regeneration of the Sinner in “A Statement of the Traditional Southern Baptist Understanding of God’s Plan of Salvation”

Note: As we discuss each article of the statement, today’s comments should focus on the affirmation and denial in Article 5. Please limit your comments here to Article 5.

Article Five: The Regeneration of the Sinner

We affirm that any person who responds to the Gospel with repentance and faith is born again through the power of the Holy Spirit. He is a new creation in Christ and enters, at the moment he believes, into eternal life.

We deny that any person is regenerated prior to or apart from hearing and responding to the Gospel.

Luke 15:24; John 3:3; 7:37-39; 10:10; 16:7-14; Acts 2:37-39; Romans 6:4-11; 10:14; 1 Corinthians 15:22; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 2:20; 6:15; Colossians 2:13; 1 Peter 3:18.