The membership requirements for a church to remain in friendly cooperation with the Southern Baptist Convention are so weak that we run the risk of watering down our doctrinal standards in the areas of baptism and congregational polity. Additionally, one wonders if lax membership requirements, combined with generous church planting support systems and theological education tuition subsidies, might be attracting to our fold those who do not truly embrace our Southern Baptist principles and convictions. Can we honestly say that we are making more Southern Baptists when many of these so-called converts are actually BINO’s—or Baptists In Name Only?
***This article was previously posted at the Christian Examiner and is used by permission.
Several Southern Baptist state conventions leaders have accused the denomination’s North American Mission Board (NAMB) of linking financial support from the national entity — funding for church planting and other ministries — to secretive Cooperative Agreements which include a clause that threatens to withhold ministry funds to the states if disclosures about the agreement — or concerns — are shared publicly. Continue reading
Twenty years ago, evaluating a Southern Baptist Church’s support for missions at the associational, state, national and international level was fairly simple—report the percentage of undesignated receipts forwarded by the church through the Cooperative Program and through their local association and you would have a pretty good idea if they were cooperating. Continue reading