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May 10, 2007



First, let me say that I am thankful for people like you who are willing to bring motions before the convention in this manner. Hopefully, the X-Comm will do the right thing and bring this motion before the floor. After all, that is the true Baptist way of doing things in allowing the messengers (and therefore the churches) to decide on these matters.

If you wouldn't mind, could you e-mail me what you mean when you keep saying that this SBC will be your last time to deal with denominational issues, etc. You've mentioned that here and one Wade's site, but I don't understand what you mean. Is your church leaving the convention? Are you switching denominations? Maybe I just missed something somewhere.

The M dude

Well, brother, to me as a SB member without the long history, this sounds pretty good to me. I, too, was greatly disappointed as we delayed our process to join the IMB to see what would happen. File that motion!

David Phillips


Though I've got an idea at what Alan means I'll share with you what it means for me, and this has been my view since March, when I completed my service on the Committee on Nominations for this year. (Alan and I have talked about this and this is not his view but mine.)

I will have nothing to do with the SBC on a national scale. My state convention is the best in the country, and I love my association. I will give and work within those areas, but I am done with the SBC as a whole. We are considering how we give our CP money and may in fact keep our funds from going to the national denomination. I will not blog on SBC issues, unless I deem them important enough to do so - which means rarely. I will partner with other like-minded people to do ministry together apart from the the normal SBC channels.

David Phillips


Great resolution. Good luck with it!

Alan Cross


All that I mean is that I will not blog about this stuff anymore, follow national SBC news, or spend time participating. Our church WILL NOT leave the SBC, and we will continue to be involved locally and with our state convention. If something comes up that benefits our local body and it ties in with the SBC, then I'll take part. Basically it means that I'll just ignore all of this stuff and let others deal with it. I have way too much on my plate to keep up this involvement through reading, writing, and taking an interest long term. I think that you have to have a political streak to you to do so, and mine is pretty short. So, we'll keep giving probably and will not pull out, but I will just spend my time and energy elsewhere.

I basically keep saying that because I want people to understand that young leaders are not going to keep participating if there is no room for them. I am not a quitter though, and there is no point to leave the SBC. I would never lead a church to do that, either.

One other thing: I had a very nice person email me and tell me that the Texans were fighting the Mexicans, not the Spanish at the Alamo. Um . . . yes, that is correct. General Santa Ana and what not. Thanks for the correction and I will flail around and say that I knew that and just screwed up (which I did), but it will only be more embarassing. So, I'll just say "Thank you!" :)

Account Deleted

Alan, it would be interesting if this were stated in the form of a motion voted on by the convention so that action of our pleasure would be binding. Since resolutions generally do nothing more than give us a black eye, with the exception of honoring our hosts cities and the like. I personally am thinking the whole resolution business means little since by definition it only expresses the sentiment of those voting at that particular meeting. I for one am glad that is the case so that when someone wants to write about how many resolutions we passed about a given thing, I can safely say, I did not vote with that and so it in no way reflects my opinion as a Southern Baptist.

David, you express my feelings quite well.

Todd Pylant

I have been thinking and working on drafting a resolution, but yours if much better. If you don't mind, I will also submit one that will look very similar to yours. Perhaps the multiple submissions will get the Committee on Resolutions attention. I think your approach, focusing on the sufficiency of the BFM for doctrinal guidelines is a better approach than focussing on the issue of tongues. Like you, I will be in SA, but it might be the last straw.

Jack Maddox


If you feel this resolution, should it make it to the floor and I pray it does, will be defeated by the body, does it not stand to reason that the majority of the convention does not agree with your position? Is this what you are saying when you say it will be defeated?


Alan Cross

No, I'm not saying that at all. Here's what is influencing my thinking: I think that the majority of the SBC would agree with Tom Ascol's resolution on church membership last year, but it still went down for reasons beyond me. One of the reasons given was that if we purged our church membership rolls of those who did not attend, then where would our list of prospects come from? That was shocking to me. I am saying that I have lost a bit of faith in the system and that the whole thing seems very unpredictable. I also do not have a great deal of faith that I dotted every i and crossed every t correctly. Every time you try to take a position in Baptist life, there is some regulation that you didn't know about that jumps up.

Basically, I am a total novice at this, so my confidence in getting a resolution passed on a first try is very low. Even though I have researched this thoroughly, I am quite certain that there are some professional convention goers who would try to find a way to torpedo it. I am playing on their turf at this point and rookies rarely win. Still, I want to participate in something that I feel strongly about, so I thought I'd give it a try and appeal to Rome, er, the SBC. :)

Greg Alford


Over on Wade's blog I was accused of breaking fellowship with the IMB for suggesting that I would now lead my Church to end our financial support for the IMB... I though I might post my response here also, seeing as you are addressing this issue as well... hope you don't mind.

I have not broken fellowship with the IMB, the IMB has broken fellowship with me.

In following the language of the International Mission Board I have drafted a new “guideline” for my church when considering International Missions Agencies.

Guideline on International Missions Agencies

If an International Missions Agency “narrows the parameters of cooperation” beyond the doctrines expressed in our Statement of Faith (BFM2000), without satisfactory scriptural support, to such a degree that the members of this Southern Baptist church are no longer qualified to serve, the International Missions Agency has eliminated itself from being a representative of this church.

I hope this clears up any misunderstanding on who has initiated this breach of fellowship… it was not I!

Grace to all,

Alan Cross

Thanks, Greg. That is a position worth considering for each one of us. I have maintained the same thing when accusations of creating division have come. I will remember your words.

Greg Alford

By the way... that is a great resolution!

However, like you I do not have a lot of confidence in the system and am very doubtful it will ever see the light of day in San Antonio. You are simply too straightforward in pointing out the offensives of the IMB and the Powers that be… they will never allow their own toes to be steeped on that hard.

Nevertheless, you have written a powerful resolution that should be passed…

Grace to all,

Steve Walker

Greg illustrates what I just said in response to your previous post. Already IMB supported M's are having to raise project funds, outside of IMB budget funds, to respond to the incredible kingdom opportunities all around the world. If enough people withdraw or reduce their current support of the IMB, it is the current M's that suffer. That breaks my heart. But, Greg, you are absolutely correct, it is not you or any other SBC church that initiated this narrowing of the parameters of cooperation.

I have been saying since the new policies, now guidelines, were adopted, that the fallout of the trustees' decision would not be good. I am hearing that this whole debacle has been a real morale buster on the field. Again, that breaks my heart. However, I am glad that some trustees that have voiced opposition to these guidelines.

Alan, I'm glad you are submitting this resolution. The great thing about a blog is that now a lot of us know you are submitting it, and we'll also know whether or not it makes it to the floor. I hope other bloggers link to this post so that more people can be made aware of your proposed resolution.

Steve Walker

I just noticed I left an extra "that" in a sentence in my previous comment. The last sentence of the second paragraph should read:

However, I am glad that some trustees have voiced opposition to these guidelines.

Boyd Luter


For whatever it's worth, I think your resolution is, generally, quite well-written. However, it would have much more of a likelihood of seeing the light of day in the Convention in San Antonio if you dropped the explicit references to the IMB, NAMB and SWBTS BoTs.

Why? Because to name names comes off as angry and beligerent. But, to drop them means that the Convention assembled (i.e., as much as it ever is) is voting to effectively "second" the principle that XComm decided in February. And, if XComm and the Convention at large are clearly behind that principle, it is going to be much harder for the entity trustees to ignore it.

Let's face it: Everybody that matters already knows that these trustee boards are the offending parties, having extended their authority well beyond BFM2000. So, why not just get beyond the apparent anger (Eph. 4:26-27), or any appearance to that effect, and speak the truth in love (Eph. 4:15), asking for a vote on the sufficiency of BFM2000, a crucial underlying principle that I suspect even a lot of cessationists can agree upon, instead of focusing the issue more narrowly by naming the trustee boards and, in the process, needly turning off people through a negative tone?

IMHO, Boyd

Alan Cross

Thanks,Boyd. I definitely do not want to come across angry and I really am not. I have been conflicted about whether to be specific or to be general as well. You make some great points that I will really have to consider because if being general gives the resolution a better chance of passing, then it is worth considering, obviously. I appreciate the feedback.

Any other thoughts on this?

Les Puryear


I responded to your email about this resolution so I won't recreate all of my comments here. Let me just say that your resolution is very similar to mine, yet different in some areas. As Todd said earlier, the more resolutions we send the more the committee may actually let something go to the convention.

Go for it!



It's a good resolution as far as I am concerned. It will depend on who is part of the resolution committee as to whether they will allow it to the floor or not.

The SBC wasn't designed to operate as "majority rules, minority loses," but as a convention that operates based on trust and cooperation in both administrative and doctrinal matters. Until somewhere around the mid-1980's, individuals and churches that represented theological positions which would have been in the minority among the churches as a whole were included in cooperation. The suggestion that the majority should determine the only doctrinal basis for cooperation is antithetical to the spirit in which the SBC was formed and has operated for most of its history.

Tim Sweatman


This is a superb resolution. You have laid everything out in an orderly, logical manner. I don't see how any Southern Baptist could disagree with the basic premise of this resolution. My only concern is one that has already been mentioned: the naming of the IMB, NAMB, and SWBTS. Not because I don't believe they should be publicly rebuked by the Convention---I think such a rebuke would be entirely appropriate. But on a practical level I don't believe that the messengers would adopt a resolution openly critical of our entities, and I am almost certain that the Resolutions Committee would not send such a resolution to the floor. Even without these references, I'm not entirely confident that it will make it through the committee anyway, but if it does then I believe it will pass, especially once it becomes clear to the messengers that the X-Comm basically said the same thing a few months ago.

I regret that I won't be in San Antonio to give my full support to this and other like-minded resolutions and/or motions. Not to mention having the chance once again to enjoy fellowship with you and others.



Well done. I would echo the encouragement to basically drop the last RESOLVED, but only in the interest of the resolution getting a greater hearing, not because it isn't worth saying.

I do wish there were a way to address these sort of things in the form of a motion rather than a resolution because the resolution route feels like the intent just gets neutered. But, alas, the hoops that must be negotiated for a motion to get a hearing seems to require a law degree and Divine intervention, and unfortunately I don't possess the former and have lost confidence that the Divine is much interested in intervening in our denominational politics.

Alan Cross

Thanks, guys. I think that I probably will drop the references to the IMB, NAMB, and SWBTS and be more general. People will understand what I am talking about and I do want to create the greatest opportunity for this to get out of committee. Thanks for all of the feedback!

Alan Cross


I am sorry that I will not see you either. Hang in there, bro. God has some great things in store for you as you continue to follow Him. He is faithful.

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