Below is an article by Gary Ledbetter, Editor of the Southern Baptist Texan. It was originally printed in the Southern Baptist Texan and is reprinted here with permission.
In November 2008, messengers to the 10th anniversary of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention annual meeting passed a resolution that defines “Great Commission Resurgence” pretty well. Perhaps the document can be a complement to the statement proposed for the 2009 Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Louisville.
Many will know already that SBC President Johnny Hunt, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary President Daniel Akin, and others have called for a missionary resurgence as a follow up to the already established Conservative Resurgence of the 1980s and 1990s. The thought being that evangelism and missions have not flourished in the SBC over the past 50 years and this fact indicates a deep problem we should address in some way.
Dr. Akin’s formulation of 10 axioms has become the centerpiece of Johnny Hunt’s presidential agenda. They’ve set up a website and many are speculating on an extensive plan for restructuring the denomination that could grow out of what Hunt hopes will be a groundswell. You’ll find the stories at the bottom of this article.
I believe the SBTC’s resolution is complementary to this emphasis because it has a finer focus. It is more local in its source, was more local in its editorial process, and was adopted by a smaller (compared to the SBC) denominational fellowship. The resolution rose up from the grassroots as an effort to clarify a term that was becoming a buzzword in denominational circles.
About three years ago I heard that Caycen had a lump in his abdomen. It turned out that it was cancer. From that time our church began praying for him and his family. The first round of Chemo seemed to have worked, but six months later the cancer returned. This young child, who is now six, has not improved. These past three years have been a struggle of ups, downs, and delays. The family and Caycen desperately need your prayers.
Caycen has Neuroblastoma Cancer of the nervous system. He has relapsed and just found out that he has 2 NEW spots and it is in his bone marrow!
1. If you are on facebook, go to this link: Praying for Caycen and join that group. Leave a message to his parents letting them know that Caycen is in your prayers. I would love to see if we can get 500 members on this site by the end of tomorrow praying for him.
2. If you don’t have facebook, you can link here at Caring Bridge and sign on as a guest.
I thank the readers of SBC Today for their prayers. While Caycen and his family desperately need them, may I humble myself to you all and covet your prayers as I minister to them.
His Truth Abideth Still
Recently, Dr. Alvin Reid responded to a post I wrote after last year’s convention. We have since exchanged very affirming emails and I was truly honored by his generous and kind response. In the post last year, I had some questions concerning what the Great Commission Resurgence (GCR) was all about because it seemed to be a new buzz term that everyone was excited over, but could not exactly explain on what it all entailed. Since that time several items have been written concerning the GCR and I am happy that Dr. Akin, Dr. Hunt and others were able to put together the new GCR 10 point document. There are several items that I affirm in this document: Lordship of Christ, Baptist Identity, gospel-centeredness, faithful Biblical preaching, and Biblical inerrancy just to name a few. But, I do have some issues in which I either desire further clarification or additional information that are discussed below.
It has been said that the blog world of SBCers has become boring. For me, it is just the opposite as I have found myself more engaged with other sites that are defending theological and moral points rather than attacking personalities. Yet, one of the items of times past that set off a firestorm was the guideline of the International Missions Board to restrict those who practiced praying in tongues. As the controversy hit an apex, a Conference on the Holy Spirit was held at Cornerstone Baptist Church in Arlington Texas. The 28th of this month will mark the two-year anniversary of that conference. Dr. Bart Barber and I were asked to participate in that conference which included many continualists. In fact you may say we were the lone non-continualists of the bunch. ?
I have many fond memories of that conference, especially the graciousness of the people at Cornerstone Baptist Church. It was also a joy to work closely with Bart and deepen our friendship. I also remember sitting on the front row when a women next to me started to speak out ecstatically at a high volume and seeing Ben Cole and Art Rogers up on the platform smiling and kind of laughing. Frankly, they helped me see the humor in the whole incident. I also remember reading my paper and going over my time limit. Thinking back on it now, I should have just presented 1 Cor. 14 expositionally. In fact I was weighing on whether I would read the paper or just preach that chapter. I should have just preached. Anyways, the overwhelming memories of that conference were the graciousness of Cornerstone and the opportunity to collaborate with a top-notch pastor/theologian like Bart.
Since that time, the fury over the guideline has subsided (at least in blog world). Other areas of interest have come and gone, but the guideline still remains. Many who were involved in SBC politics at that time have either turned their attention elsewhere or have walked away from the SBC blogging scene altogether. As things play out over the next ten years, it will be interesting to see what impact, if any, the movement against the IMB guideline on praying in tongues will have.