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February 18, 2012 / WithThatIAm...

Lumpkins Week In Review

Here are the highlights (lowlights) of Peter-prose for the week of February 12-18, 2012.

Peter’s gratuitous use of the word ‘gratuitous’ is simply amazing. A triple West Georgia hoot!


The first one to put out a bounty on Harris was Founders Ministries high sheriff, Tom Ascol. In his unhindered emotional meltdown, Ascol got so caught up in victimization rhetoric, he forgot to actually criticize a single proposition Harris wrote.

The difficulty with Birch’s piece is the gratuitous approach with which Birch begins his dissent.

Birch’s gratuity aside, Harris made it perfectly clear the issue he raised.

Rather than existing among Southern Baptists the mere presence of Calvinists like Birch falsely and gratuitously observes, it is the permeation of Calvinists among us which Harris clearly questions…

As to the first complaint, it has nothing to do with “tone” but stems from Birch’s unsubstantiated gratuitous presumption that Harris is apparently ignorant of SBC history…

From Birch’s gratuitous assumption he owed Harris a lesson in Baptist History 101 to his disputation about whether predestination constituted the proper foundation for John Calvin’s theology to his irrelevant literary complaint that Harris was “all over the place”…

Furthermore, if Birch desires to show how, from Scripture and reason, our Baptist Faith and Message is somehow supposed to affirm an elder system of church government, four centuries of Baptist polity is all ears.

It’s about resurging Calvinism, an aggressive Calvinism–a “Calvinization of the SBC,” a phrase with which Birch is quite familiar.

And, until Birch does express his change of mind and heart, perhaps it’s best to keep himself in the pot rather than in the fire, and encourage others like Gerald Harris to express their opinion on the resurging Calvinism in the Southern Baptist Convention which they sincerely perceive as William Birch has so freely expressed his  views concerning the “Calvinizing of Southern Baptists.”

First, let me be clear: I do not dance to the beat of somebody else’s drum when it comes to accountability for the posts I publish. That will stay between me, my Lord, and my conscience. Hence, please do not waste space asking the question again.

The truth is, Baptist Press will publish–and publish swiftly–public rebukes of other Southern Baptists if they are perceived as being critical toward any decisions or beliefs of those leaders Baptist Press wants every body to feel good about.

First, the Abstract of Principles  is not a full, five point Calvinist document. From a fair reading, it seems only four point Calvinism may be deduced. Hence, Mohler’s use of the AP to employ an unusually high number of Calvinists who embrace Limited Atonement makes no sense if Mohler is simply claiming he’s done so based on being consistent with the AP (and by no stretch may one cite the BF&M as a reason to hire any self-identified Calvinist for that matter).

Perhaps it is more accurate to suggest Mohler is reforming the seminary to reflect his own personal theology–and a minoritytheology in the Southern Baptist Convention–rather than the majority beliefs of Southern Baptists.


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