Over the past few weeks, several commenters have logged on to SBC Tomorrow only to lob a petrol cocktail toward The John 3:16 Conference held at The First Baptist Church, Woodstock, Georgia almost three years ago. One commenter illustrates nicely for the others:
"If the John 3:16 Conference was any indication, Calvinists are certainly not wanted and are practically anathema to our denomination... That makes me sad considering our roots" (emphasis mine; //link, //link)
Whenever I ask the person logging such a low evaluation of the John 3:16 Conference to tease out the criticism a bit by a) inquiring if he or she attended the J316 Conference; and b) which particular presentation at the conference did he or she find most offensive, inevitably, the response is either, a) while the critic did not attend the conference, he or she goes into a defense of how it remains acceptable to critique a conference not attended (which completely misses the question), or, b) the critic runs for cover never to be heard from again.
I think this demonstrates aptly the mindless judgmentalism which characterizes much of what purports to be "dialog" in the Southern Baptist Convention today.
Below is a clip featuring Dr. David Allen, Dean of the School of Theology, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, as he openly spoke at the John 3:16 Conference answering a question whether or not Calvinists are welcome in the Southern Baptist Convention. One brother who was thoroughly imbalanced not only in his understanding of biblical ecclesiology, but because his experience with aggressive Calvinism created in him a spirit of exclusionism from all Calvinism, he came to the J316 Conference looking for a solution he disappointedly discovered absent at the conference. Hence, he quizzed the panel about how to "get rid" of Calvinism. Dr. Allen graciously corrected the brother's misguided focus. And, those who continually misrepresent non-Calvinists and their alleged hatred for their brothers in Christ really need to listen carefully to Dr. Allen's wise and helpful counsel:
With that, I am...