Check out this excellent blog post by Eric Price, a Th.M student at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. Here is a taste of “Southern Baptists: The Gatekeepers of Christian Orthodoxy?“:
The Southern Baptist twittersphere has been up in arms about the Revoice Conference. One of the most extensive criticisms is from Owen Strachan of Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Strachan’s article has been approvingly retweeted by numerous other Southern Baptists, including Jason Allen and Albert Mohler. Since the conference is hosted at a PCA church and features a speaker who is a professor at Covenant Theological Seminary, Strachan implicates both the denomination and the seminary in his criticism.
The Southern Baptist reaction to this conference has led Anthony Bradley to ask why Southern Baptists see themselves as the church’s gatekeepers of orthodoxy – our doctrinal and moral exemplars who have the prerogative to regularly condemn other denominations, churches, and individuals for supposed errors. It’s a good question, and one that I have thought about recently.
The question is especially relevant now, since the SBC’s #metoo moment has exposed the irony of looking to the denomination as a measuring line of Christian ethics. One might reasonably expect this moral crisis to produce an introspective humility among SBC leaders that would give them pause about publicly criticizing the faults of others.
Yet apparently no such humbling has come about; in addition to criticizing LGBT+ Christians, Covenant Seminary, and the PCA, they have also recently condemned Michael Curry, some Australians, “the left”, and Disney. Even Al Mohler’s article lamenting the SBC’s faults still managed to strike a triumphalist tone about the dominance of conservatism and complementarianism in the denomination while taking swipes at the Roman Catholic Church and egalitarians. I am grateful for Dr. Mohler’s honesty about the state of the SBC, but I wonder why he must criticize others even as he admits his own blind spots.
I have noticed a similar trend over the years. Read some of these posts:
A post on the unbelievable institutional narcissism of the SBC: “Southern Baptists: The Gatekeepers of Christian Orthodoxy?” //They may have jumped the shark & are now evangelicalism’s liability rather than an asset. https://t.co/6RF4uUnA6p via @wordpressdotcom #WhereIsTheLie
— Anthony Bradley (@drantbradley) June 6, 2018
I think it is time for Southern Baptist to shut their mouths for a time and get their own house in order.