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Feb 14, 2013


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David (NAS) Rogers

I am in the midst of teaching an interpretation class at the association office. Our association is made up of many pastors who did not go to seminary, and discussions on these matters do not normally come up. However, so far in the class, when I have brought up scriptures on other matters where there are disagreements, when I point out the contrasting positions, and when I sketch the implications that come from each viewpoint and their impact on ministry, the class becomes very interested. I suspect that should I bring up the above topics and then proceed to analysis of scripture, perspective, theology, implication, and on to ministry, the interest and discussion would be the opposite of "sick and tired."

A Calvinist viewpoint on meticulous providence would greatly interest and impact those who engage in grief counseling and dealing with people struggling with sexual orientation issues.

peter lumpkins

Hi David. Thanks for your comment. Your experience fits nicely what I encounter among average church members. Most of the congregants of my church have little (if any) theological education but they remain interested in theological subjects and most questions the theologically-inclined normally pursue when those questions are spawned by biblical passages. They become very motivated to learn what's going on here, why churches and Christians hold different views, what Baptists have historically believed about such and such. I'm presently finishing up a series on the BF&M which has taken me many months to accomplish. Their interest level is quite astounding.

Thanks again...

Aaron O'Kelley

I recall a "Building Bridges" conference held several years ago, the purpose of which was to have an open, honest, charitable discussion between brothers who disagree on many of these issues. It was a model of how to do this well.

A little while later, the first "John 3:16" conference emerged, billing itself as a "majoritarian response" to the previous conference. Interestingly, the latter conference only represented one theological perspective, in contrast to its predecessor. I think that speaks for itself.

peter lumpkins

Sorry, Aaron. How ever the BB conference was billed, the J316C so far as I recall--and I both wrote about it and attended it--was never billed as the '"majoritarian response" to the previous conference'. Rather is was consistently billed as a response to 5 Point Calvinism period. Therefore to judge it based on criteria it never claimed remains entirely unfair. So, that makes your claim speak for itself as well I suppose.

Have a good afternoon...


I could care less, either way, but looks like the "majoritarian" comment came from Steve Lemke on Ed Stetzer's blog, a note that apparently Mr. Lemke said Mr. Stetzer could post: "This conference is intended as a majoritarian Southern Baptist response to the “Building Bridges” and “Together for the Gospel” conferences. The announcement of this conference has already provoked considerable buzz and speculation in the blogosphere. Hope you’ll join us! Steve Lemke"

You'll have to scroll down the page to see it:

peter lumpkins

With all due respect to Dr. Lemke whom I count a dear friend, he was/is welcome to give his view of what the first J316C was billed as. But he was a platform speaker, neither the strategizer nor organizer, Matt. From the beginning, the J316C was a response to 5 point Calvinism. And, frankly I'm in a pretty good position to know this since I was a part of the process.


Building Bridges was about Building Bridges between 5 point and 4 point Calvinists. Building a bridge between those who disagree on limited atonement is not crossing such a wide chasm. I understand Calvinists now have "acceptable" nonCalvinist to proclaim "I love nonCalvinists really." But it's the U that matters.


Well, he called it what he wanted, and it was published in a B&H book. That quote from Lemke is found in Chuck Lawless & Adam Greenway's book, The Great Commission Resurgence: Fulfilling God's Mandate in Our Time, on page 74. That book footnotes Stetzer's website that I posted on my comment.

peter lumpkins


I'm not sure what point you wish to make. The footnote is in Nathan Finn's chapter which he cites in support of his criticism toward those who apparently questioned the balance of the Building Bridges Conference of which he was a part. Nothing new is here. It's still the same source you cited the first time, still an insufficient source to demonstrate the J316C's main purpose was other than responding to 5 point Calvinism. Both the conference and the book based upon the conference--Whosoever Will: a Biblical-Theological Critique of Five Point Calvinism http://www.amazon.com/Whosoever-Will-Biblical-Theological-Five-Point-Calvinism/dp/0805464166 -- was publicly billed as focusing on critiquing Calvinism not discussing it. I don't know how to make that any clearer.


"Topics we all talk about but never seem to settle..."

We can talk about it ... think about it ... talk about it ... think about it ... until the cows come home. But I settled these topics with the Holy Spirit's help a long time ago. I can answer all those questions, but it doesn't really matter what I think in my intellect - we must base our walk on revealed Truth not the teachings and traditions of men. I'm on a path that has brought me safe thus far and will lead me home ... I never needed a systematic approach to my journey.


I'm not trying to make a point. I have no issue with this is SBC life. No need to get snarky. :-) I just noticed that you shut Aaron down for calling it a "majoritarian response". I assumed that since he put it in quotes, he had heard or read of it somewhere. I googled it and tracked the verbiage back to Lemke.

peter lumpkins


When you can demonstrate how stating a fact is supposedly getting "snarky" I'll be glad to address it. Until you can, we'll just leave it at that.

Now, for the third time, the source you cite has little if anything to judge as to whether Aaron's assertion possessed credibility; namely, that the "John 3:16" conference emerged, billing itself as a "majoritarian response" to the previous conference." This is entirely skewed, having little accurate substance at all. While others conferences may have contributed in some way as to the occasion of the first J316C, conferences were by no means the core purpose of the J316C, a purpose clearly and publicly presented as a conference the speakers of which were responding to five point Calvinism. Therefore, Aaron's statement (and apparently your view as well since you continue to milk this cow) misrepresents the J316C's actual purpose.

I trust we can move on from this unless you have something either new or relevant to add. Have a good weekend...

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