Tuesday, June 13, 2006

SBC in Greensboro--Tuesday Morning

The first session of the SBC Annual Meeting had its share of contention, but overall there were no major problems. The first significant matter of business was the introduction of a motion by Wade Burleson requesting the Executive Committee to appoint an ad hoc committee to look into a number of matters related to the recent IMB controversies. For a full text of the original motion (the version that was submitted was altered to delete the reference to By-law 26B) you can go here. Several other motions, a few of which were obviously in response to the IMB issues, were offered. During the afternoon session the Committee on Order of Business will report on how these motions will be addressed.

The most contention point of the morning session occurred when a messenger from Georgia introduced an amendment to the Ad Hoc Cooperative Program Committee report that would have reinstated the references to a goal of 10% for churches to strive for. Debate was cut off when Jerry Vines, after speaking in opposition to the amendment, moved the question. I was irritated because I was in line to speak for the amendment. A point of order was raised declaring that at the 2005 convention a rule was adopted prohibiting a messenger from speaking to an issue then moving the question, but the chair disallowed the point of order. The amendment was defeated.

The other significant thing about the morning session was Morris Chapman's report. Chapman urged Southern Baptists not to allow the issue of Calvinism to divide us or distract us from missions and evangelism. But Chapman's strongest warning came against "political posturing" by those in the SBC; this comment was especially aimed at those who had led the Conservative Resurgence.

I'll report later today on the afternoon session. The highlight of this session will be the presidential election. Apparently Jerry Sutton has made some troubling remarks to the effect that an amendment to the BFM 2000 regarding the issue of private prayer language is necessary.

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