In an earlier essay entitled The SPRINKLED Baptist Convention, the practice of accepting members into a Southern Baptist Church without requiring immersion baptism was explored. As evidence, I cited the following policy verbatim:
While we practice a baptism by immersion at [Church Name], we do not require the mode of immersion for membership. If a person was sprinkled or immersed (or a possible other mode) after conversion, he or she has met our requirement for membership.
In the comment stream, I was told by one commenter that he had copied this quote and pasted it into his search engine browser. He found that on the very first page of search engine results there were several churches that had embraced this same precise language. It is reasonable to conclude others are using it as well.
Dear NAMB Trustees,
As the pastor of a Southern Baptist Church happy to partner with NAMB in the planting of new Southern Baptist churches, let me thank you for all that you are doing for His Kingdom. I assure you the request I am making in this correspondence stems from a profound sense of gospel stewardship and an unwavering belief that those churches who participate through the North American Mission Board in planting new churches deserve to receive a complete disclosure of any and all information deemed helpful in understanding our mutual work.
The concept of a coalition united around the spread of the gospel of Jesus Christ is unassailable for a Great Commission Christian such as myself. In fact, I belong to just such a gospel coalition formed in 1845 and still going strong. It is known, of course, as the Southern Baptist Convention. Interestingly, this word coalition often has political connotations rather than religious ones. Millions of Southern Baptists do not realize there exists a certain coalition, with members inside and outside the SBC, united around a particular theological view and ministry philosophy. This organization is known as The Gospel Coalition.