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good resolutions. you have mostly been true to all of these resolutions already. i'm thankful for you, and i'm glad that you're a southern baptist.

i'd like to invite you to read my latest post on my blog. i think that you'll find it very interesting. :)



Peter, you are such a thief, you stole my idea! It was in my head, it just hadn't made it to paper/blog. Now, if I do what I was planning, it will look like I am a copycat :-(.

Great minds think alike!

Serious question. Can you tell me what you mean by the Calvinists of the 19th century? I've known of the controversy in SB life over Calvinism for some time now, but your reference to the Calvinists of the 19th century is a new concept and the idea that people have a goal of returning to that is something I hadn't heard.



But what about the Calvinism of the 21st Century... I think that is a good calvinism to turn to :)
I can hear a new series warbling in the nest...
"Pete Lumpkins and the Calvinists of the 21st Century!"
Sort of like Daffy Duck's expostion of "Buck Rogers in the 21st Century!!!"
Keep it light Peter.. and thanks again for those materials.. I am loving them!!!


Peter: this is what I'm posting about soon. Great resolutions. Looks like we're in for a great year of discussion here.

Trish, I won't think you are a copy-cat. It's probably what dozens of folks have in mind for the New Year posts. Join in the fun. selahV


What Steve said.

Peter, I have a question about:

Resolved: To continue raising questions whether a return to the Calvinism of the 19th Century is a healthy goal for Southern Baptists

The issue for me really boils down to this. Does a person in the SBC have the right to be a Calvinist (of whichever century) and still call themselves SBC? That is, after Biblical study and personal reflection, do they have the freedom to choose according to the dictates of conscience, and teach others according to the sincerity of their views? Each "return" (if someone wants to call it that) is deeply personal. No one, and I repeat, no one should be forced to be a Calvinist who doesn't want to be one. Indeed, it's impossible, except perhaps in the area of external coercion, which is immoral. By the same token, it should not be considered a cardinal sin against orthodoxy to subscribe to a Calvinist viewpoint, if genuinely persuaded to such (as I pray all or most of the SBC eventually will be). To talk of "return" in a threatening sense, really should be a non-issue, as I hope it is with every serious Calvinist in the SBC.



I appreciate your words and wish for our fellowship a deeper dimension. I'll swing by your post, David.

Grace. With that, I am...




I expected many would be up for a post like this so I put mine up early, copy cat :^)

I'll look forward to reading yours. With that, I am...


p.s. your question is a good one and since it is similar to Byron's, I'll consider it together with his...



It's good to see Aussies not lose their sense of humor. Actually, I like 19thC Calvinists better! :| Dr. Vines is a great preacher, is he not?


I'll look forward to your list. By the way, your post on tithing was excellent. Dragging in an author to promote his book is no small feat!

With that, I am...



Trish & Byron,

Both questions are fair ones--especially since a major reason SBCTomorrow opened shop about a year and a half ago was to be a haven for NonCalvinists.

Indeed when I started to post, no Southern Baptist blogger, to my knowledge, was online who specifically identified himself/herself as NonCalvinist. Some will say that it doesn't matter. On one level I agree. It does not matter.

So, Byron, to answer your query: "Does a person in the SBC have the right to be a Calvinist (of whichever century) and still call themselves SBC?" Most certainly. Be my guest. Being Calvinist or NonCalvinist appears to have always taken a back seat in SBC life, as far as conformity goes. We've been all over the map--strongly Calvinist, weakly calvinist, moderate, lite, etc. etc. So the answer to your question is 'Yes. Most Definitely.' My hope is, no one will find a post here that ever suggests differently.

The challenge I propose to offer at SBC Tomorrow aims to balance out the goal from Founders' advocates to 'reform' Southern Baptist Churches to the explicit 5 Point Calvinism of Boyce and company from around the year 1845. From my view, if anyone is imposing, it is not NonCalvinists. Rather, it is Founders' Calvinists and/or advocates who insist Southern Baptists have 'lost the gospel', 'forsaken the faith of our fathers' 'become Arminian-oriented, and therefore, human-oriented in our view of salvation'. The solution? We must recapture the 'faith once for all given to the saints'.

One could hardly argue with some of the above, especially if it's true. If we've lost the gospel, by all means we must recover it. If we've become 'human-oriented' in our view of salvation, God help us to get back to God-oriented! (I refuse to equate 'human-oriented' salvation with 'Arminian-oriented'. It is simply slanderous and theologically ignorant).

I say we go to the gallows for the Apostolic call of Jude: 'defend the faith once for all given to the saints'. The difficulty I see is when Founders' open up their box of gospel goodies they possess as 'the faith once given' it looks strangely like the five point Calvinism of many Southern Baptists of the 19th Century. In other words, the faith once given is the 'Doctrines of Grace'.

My question is, if that is so, whose pond is being drained? Calvinists or NonCalvinists?

Frankly, I wish it would all go away. This conversation milks us dry. Yet, when a fairly prominent group thinks, by and large, its own convention of churches has forsaken the faith once for all given, it's unlikely a 'truce' will be called.

Furthermore, I'm sorry to say, if I am close to correct, these recent calls for 'bridge-building' while initially touching, seems, in the long run, only to offer a false hope. Many Churches lay in the ash heap of ruin being 'reformed' to Calvinism. How many more is an uncertain number.

Our Sovereign Lord save Southern Baptists. With that, I am...




Thanks for your viewpoint on the Calvinist position. I was unaware of any movement to return the churches to a prior state that represented Calvinist theology. I am aware of a movement to have more theologically sound churches consisting of regenerate members, a movement I think is quite necessary.

In my limited experience, I have found that too many 'Christian's' don't go to church, don't know what the Bible teaches, and most don't exhibit a personal relationship with Christ. Of the people I meet that do go to church, most don't know what the Bible teaches unless it justifies how they live, mostly that it's ok to do what they want because God's forgiven them. In other words, they live on what I have heard termed, 'cheap grace.'

That has been my experience. Whether that represents reality, I don't know, but it is consistent with what I read in many places, particularly in the blogs.

So, I would say there seems to be a real problem. What the solution is, I wouldn't claim to know. What I do know, is that I want to be part of the solution. I hope to be someone who will give women a theological foundation, teaching them about Christ and what God reveals in His word, showing why it is important for them to know and why it is right and good for women to know theology.

Ok, there's my soapbox speech for today. I'll step down now, though I have tons more thoughts just wanting to spill out.

Thanks for letting me get on my soapbox on your blog. I seem to be turning this into a habit, see volfan's blog.

Have a Blessed Day,


Peter: thanks for the kudos on my tithing post. I was quite pleased that the good author entered the stream. He does have much to add to the conversation, albeit, adverse to my understanding of tithing. Nevertheless...I shall plod on and try to dig deeper into the truth as God allows me to see it. selahV

Benji Ramsaur


I just wanted to say I hope you have a blessed new year.



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