Archive for the ‘Andrew’ category

“Calvinism” in “Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (1859-2009)”- excerpts from the book by Dr. Gregory A. Wills, Part 2

July 23, 2009

Part 2: “Calvinism” in both Landmark and non-Landmark churches during the early days of the SBC

[In the following excerpt from Dr. Gregory A. Wills‘ new book Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (1859-2009), historical information is given that demonstrates a broad acceptance of “Calvinism” within both Landmark and non-Landmark churches of Southern Baptist Convention previous to 1900.

In Baptist circles, the terms “Landmark Baptists” or “Landmarkers” refer to those who hold to a specific view of Baptist history: namely, that there has been an unbroken line of Baptist churches from the apostles to the present. This view usually has implications for how  Baptists are to relate to other churches or if other groups can even properly be referred to as “churches.”

Baptists who reject the Landmark view of Baptist history would agree that the church during the apostolic era was baptistic in nature- in other words, all Baptists are convinced that we get our ideas about baptism and church government, etc., from the apostles- but consider the idea of an unbroken line of Baptist churches to be historically dubious as well as biblically unnecessary.

That both Landmark and non-Landmark Baptists at the beginning of the SBC held to a “Calvinistic” understanding of God’s work in salvation is interesting for Southern Baptists today because many in the SBC who hold to a Landmark-influenced view of Baptist history- such as the leadership of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary- also reject “Calvinism” and would charge non-Landmark “Calvinists” with over-emphasizing the historical-theological connection between Baptists and the Puritans.

The remainder of this post is a quote from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (1859-2009), pages 91-92.]: (more…)

Timmy Brister on “Morris Chapman, Calvinism, and Saving Faith”

July 22, 2009

On his blog, “Provocations and Pantings,” former SBF blogger Timmy Brister has recently published a 3-part series of posts responding to statements that Morris Chapman, president and CEO of the Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention, made concerning Calvinism and saving faith at this year’s Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting. (Timmy also responds to some issues in regards to Chapman’s attempts to clarify his statements since the Convention.)

Below is a compilation and brief explanation of Timmy’s posts:

Part 1: Timmy addresses some issues of hypocrisy in Chapman’s statements and the caricature Chapman makes of “Calvinism.”

Part 2: Chapman’s specific charges against “Calvinism” in the SBC are closely examined and critiqued.

Part 3: Chapman’s use of the concept of “antinomy” and a quote that he gave by Spurgeon are critiqued, and then Timmy examines a series of quotes from Baptists, historical and contemporary, regarding saving faith.

Anyone interested in the current debate in the Southern Baptist Convention concerning the doctrines of grace- commonly called “Calvinism”- would benefit from reading Timmy Brister’s posts, linked above.

“Calvinism” in “Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (1859-2009)”- excerpts from the book by Dr. Gregory A. Wills, Part 1

July 21, 2009

[It is my intention to write a series of posts giving a few selected passages from Dr. Gregory A. Wills‘ new book  Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (1859-2009). These passages, from pages 90-97 and 542-543, are focused on “Calvinism” at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (SBTS) and within the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) as a whole.]

Part 1: “Calvinism” at SBTS and in the SBC at the founding of Southern Seminary (from pages 90-91).

The theology that [SBTS founder James P.] Boyce relied upon was Calvinism. It was the doctrine of the seminary’s Abstract of Principles and the prevailing theology of Baptists in the nineteenth-century South. A significant number rejected the doctrine of “limited atonement”,” and the rest did not make belief in it a condition of fellowship. But the churches and associations generally refused fellowship with pastors or churches that rejected other aspects of Calvinism.

President Johnny Hunt: Friend to the Reformed in the SBC?

June 26, 2009

Speaking at the Founders Breakfast previous to this year’s Southern Baptist Convention, Dr. Danny Akin, president of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and personal friend of SBC President Johnny Hunt, asserted that Hunt (who he recognized as previously guilty of slandering the Reformed position) has become more friendly to those with Reformed convictions and to Reformed soteriology itself in the past couple of years, largely due to Hunt reading Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology. (Dr. Akin explained the fact that First Baptist Church Woodstock, which Hunt pastors, hosted the anti-Calvinist “John 3:16 Conference” in light of the fact that the Conference was hosted by FBC Woodstock member Jerry Vines, and was planned long in advance.)

One piece of evidence that may tend to support Dr. Akin’s assertion of Hunt’s greater friendliness to the Reformed soteriological position may be found in the Strange BaptistFire article, “A very ‘Calvinistic’ sermon from SBC President Johnny Hunt,” which is the fifth-most viewed post of all time from this blog. I encourage readers to view that post and to listen to the sermon linked on that post and to consider whether those with Reformed convictions may indeed be encouraged by Johnny Hunt’s leadership in the SBC.

Compilation of Posts Responding to Mark Driscoll’s Presentation of Un/Limited Atonement

June 24, 2009

Introduction

Why Did Jesus Die?

The Chart

The Proof-Texts

Calvin Quotes

An Unaddressed Question

“Reconciliation”

The Day of Atonement

Response to Driscoll’s Presentation of Un/Limited Atonement: The Day of Atonement

June 12, 2009

In the “Question and Answer” section of his chapter on “Unlimited Limited Atonement” in Death by Love, Mark Driscoll writes, “Jesus’ work on the cross follows the pattern of the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16)… The two goats provided propitiation and expiation on behalf of all the people, even though these benefits were applied only to God’s elect, a remnant within the larger group” (179).

This kind of analogy (between the atonement made by Christ and the atonement made on the Day of Atonement) is persuasive at first glance against Limited atonement. When I first began struggling to understand the biblical teaching on the extent of the atonement, I had considered a similar conclusion to that reached by Driscoll specifically due to the system of atonement found in the Old Testament. Two considerations led me to reconsider such conclusions based on “the pattern of the Day of Atonement.” (more…)

Response to Driscoll’s Presentation of Un/Limited Atonement: “Reconciliation”

June 11, 2009

In Death by Love Mark Driscoll writes, “…Jesus died for all people in general so that they obtain some general benefits, and for the elect Christians in particular so that they would enjoy additional specific benefits regarding salvation.” Considered on its own, there is nothing objectionable about this quote, and “5-point Calvinists” have made similar statements. (For example, Charles Spurgeon has been quoted as saying, “We believe that by His atoning sacrifice, Christ bought some good things for all men and all good things for some men.”) What makes Driscoll’s view objectionable, however, is the content of what “general benefits” he understands to be purchased for “all people” through the death of Christ. (more…)


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