Southern Baptist Convention Puts Out a Report on Calvinism in the SBC
June 3, 2013 8 Comments
Here is a link to Christianity Today’s article on it. The article has the full text of their report ”
This is a plea for unity without uniformity. It is also a plea to not let the SBC be dominated and directed exclusively by either side of the debate. Make sure to read the TENSIONS section. There was a lot of conversation behind this document. You can tell it is worded with extreme care to not misrepresent or offend anyone and to lean on commonalities as much as possible. There is also an appeal to both the rock solid truth of scriptures and the mystery of living in the tension of the unknown that I find very interesting. The TENSION section concludes with this,
We agree that God is absolutely sovereign in initiating salvation, uniting the believer to Himself, and preserving the believer to the end, but we differ as to how God expresses His sovereignty with respect to human freedom. We agree that the Holy Spirit working through the Gospel enables sinners to be saved, but we differ as to whether this grace is resistible or irresistible. We agree on the necessity of regeneration that results in God-ordained, Christ-centered, Spirit-empowered obedience from the heart, but differ as to whether faith precedes regeneration or regeneration precedes faith. We agree that most Southern Baptists believe that those who die before they are capable of moral action go to heaven through the grace of God and the atonement of Christ, even as they differ as to why this is so.
These differences should spur us to search the Scriptures more dutifully, to engage in lively interaction for mutual sharpening and collective Gospel effectiveness, and to give thanks that what we hold in common far surpasses that on which we disagree. But these particular differences do not constitute a sufficient basis for division and must not be allowed to hamper the truly crucial cooperative effort of taking the Gospel to a waiting world. Southern Baptists who stand on either side of these issues should celebrate the freedom to hold their views with passion while granting others the freedom to do the same.”