Dear Lighthouse Trails:
As a Southern Baptist, I am concerned that powerful leaders in the Southern Baptist Convention are taking the denomination far from its biblical moorings. Bureaucracy within the organization is to blame, as are a few mega-church pastors who take turns filling decision-making posts whether elected or appointed. What can Southern Baptists do to stop the march toward progressivism and apostasy?
Most Southern Baptists who believe the denomination is standing strong on moral issues would be shocked to hear leadership double-talk concerning the normalization of LGBT behavior and involvement in Revoice. Also shocking are stances on contemplative spirituality, immigration, social justice/social gospel, and wealth re-distribution. Alliances with Muslims, Mormons and the Pope have led to compromises in the presentation of the Gospel. The Gospel has also been distorted through LifeWay Bookstore’s sale of books and literature written by false teachers.
It appears some SBC policymakers care more about what is politically and spirituality “correct” than what is biblically correct. We must remember not to be “unequally yoked with unbelievers; for what fellowship hath righteousness and what communion hath light with darkness.”
Russell Moore and the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission are behind much of what is wrong in the SBC. In an article titled “Cultural Seduction and the Demise of the Southern Baptist Convention,” Jeff Maples said Moore has “dedicated his life and career to changing the dynamics of a denomination that once stood on the authority of the Scripture and the power of the gospel . . . to a voting bloc that seeks to radically change the culture in ways that true conservatives would detest.”
Maples went on to say, “Whether it’s calling Jesus an ‘illegal migrant’ in his push for open borders and immigration amnesty, his advocacy of environmentalist ‘creation care’ his ecumenical worship with adherents of other religions like at the Becket Fund’s multi-faith gathering, his ethical compromise to attend gay wedding celebrations but not the wedding itself, calling conservatives who believe in national sovereignty idolaters, Moore certainly has more in common with Nancy Pelosi than he does Bible-believing Christians.” The article also addresses actions by SBC President J.D. Greear. [https://reformationcharlotte.org/2019/01/31/cultural-seduction-and-the-demise-of-the-southern-baptist-convention/]
Controversy erupted when a sermon Greear gave on homosexuality was released. In Mississippi’s Baptist Record, Tommy Jamison compared God’s Word to Greer’s troubling views. Another controversy arose after Greear called on the SBC to place women in the highest levels of leadership. Since then Beth Moore’s name has been floated as president of the convention, possibly in 2020.
The celebrity speaker and writer, whose imagination gets in the way of sound exegesis has been criticized for having “wild-eyed prophetic visions;” aligning herself with false teachers including Joel Osteen, Joyce Meyer, and Christine Caine, and promoting contemplative spirituality. Despite Beth Moore’s lack of biblical adherence, her women’s Bible studies continue to be favorites and are financially lucrative for LifeWay. Rick Warren’s books also provide big profits tor LifeWay, so it is doubtful the well-documented problems with his Daniel Plan, P.E.A.C.E. Plan and collaboration with Fabian Socialist Tony Blair will lead to disgrace and ouster from the SBC.
I believe most Southern Baptists are oblivious to duplicity in the denomination and in the “Christian” world because pastors are silent. Until pastors begin warning their sheep, I don’t see a resurgence of biblical understanding and action. In the Book of Hosea, priests had led the people away from the knowledge of God. Hosea prophesied that unless the Northern Kingdom repented, God would destroy it and allow the people to be taken into captivity. This was a popular message before the conservative resurgence in the 1980s. We should take heed for the sake of our Christian witness and for our children and grandchildren. Pray God will awaken us and raise up leaders to the message of Hosea.
LTRP Note: Mrs. McNeece has been pro-active in trying to help Southern Baptist pastors in her own home state. For over two years, she has been purchasing Lighthouse Trails booklets and having them sent out to over 1500 Baptist pastors so they might become aware of the apostasy that has entered the church. We commend her for these efforts and also for this open letter.
(photo from bigstockphoto.com; used with permission)