Sunday, May 07, 2006

Memphis Declaration

I've continued to follow with considerable interest the blogging going on in the SBC blogosphere, especially as it relates to missions. I appreciate very much the spirit that was exhibited by the signers of the Memphis Declaration in their stated resolve of the need to repent of many of the most grievous actions committed by those who were in the vanguard of the conservative resurgence movement. I would wish (though I'm certainly not holding my breath) that this same spirit of reconciliation could spread throughout the SBC like the uncontrollable grassfires that have swept so many parts of our nation in recent months. I hear many bloggers saying that while they cannot speak for others, they subscribe to the spirit of the declaration. Unfortunately, there are those who view the signers as possessing a political agenda on the one hand, or worse still, who continue to insist that the actions of the leaders of the resurgence were praiseworthy and that these individuals should continue to command our thanks and respect. The path to reconciliation will not be advanced by those who continue to vilify conservative Baptists who do not happen to share their exact interpretations of doctrines which are non-essential in terms of salvation. Jesus' high priestly prayer for the unity of His followers in John 17 is trampled underfoot by those who create unnecessary divisions in their zeal to appear more devout than the Pharisees.

1 comment:

GuyMuse said...

Gary, you write...

Jesus' high priestly prayer for the unity of His followers in John 17 is trampled underfoot by those who create unnecessary divisions in their zeal to appear more devout than the Pharisees.

I just finished posting several Reggie McNeal quotes that I got from Marty Duren's blog. There are a couple that would apply to what you write above...

"The church in North America is not like the Pharisees--we are the Pharisees, and Jesus does not like Pharisees."

"The Pharisees clumped together and built a parallel culture--refuge theology is Pharisaical. When dealing with Pharisaism, we are dealing with a religion that has nothing to do with Jesus. They have a heart for religion, but not a heart for God."