Not Your Grandfather’s Southern Baptist

The Wall Street Journal has a fantastic article on the Rev. Fred Luter, the next president of the Southern Baptist Convention. It begins this way:

For months, the leadership of the Southern Baptist Convention has been debating whether to drop the word “Southern” from its name. But last week, citing the hassle and expense, leaders abandoned this attempt to scrub the racial overtones from the convention’s image. As it turns out, the SBC is poised to do something much more significant.

Meet the Rev. Fred Luter Jr., pastor of New Orleans’s 4,500-member Franklin Avenue Baptist Church—and the man who this spring will likely become the first black president of the Southern Baptist Convention. He announced last month that he was putting himself in the running, and the convention’s movers and shakers seem almost unanimous in their support.

Read the rest here.

17 Responses to Not Your Grandfather’s Southern Baptist

  1. yankeegospelgirl March 2, 2012 at 10:03 am #

    “In a year when liberals will be leveling the charge of racism against opponents of the president’s policies, we can look forward to seeing their reaction to Fred Luter Jr.”

    …as if that’ll make any difference? At all?

    Republicans have been attempting to avoid the appearance of racism for a long, long, long time now. To say “conservatives are racists” broad-brush anymore is ludicrous and a mere figment of the left’s imagination. And yet somehow we still think they’re going to say, “Oooooh, I get it. Sorry, we thought you were racist all this time! We’ll stop harassing you about that now—our bad.” Never gonna happen. Ever.

    • yankeegospelgirl March 2, 2012 at 10:20 am #

      Case in point, look at regular reader Paul’s constant attacks on Denny for being “racist” because he says negative things about Obama, when only a liberal could call DENNY of all people a racist.

    • JStanton March 3, 2012 at 12:32 am #

      Well, probably not. I think that there will always be real racists among us (humanity) and we should always stand against wickedness in whatever form it appears.

      Just this week a Federal Judge admitted to forwarding a racist email about the President. That kind of thing happens a lot and most just don’t admit to it in polite company.

      In any case, I think the selection or election of Rev. Luter is a good thing for historical purposes but race shouldn’t really matter in the body of Christ.

      • yankeegospelgirl March 3, 2012 at 10:50 am #

        The truth that even fewer people want to admit in polite company is the vicious racism exhibited on the part of the black community towards whites.

        • JStanton March 3, 2012 at 12:55 pm #

          I think it’s human to feel prejudiced about certain people or things at certain times. It happens to everybody.

          Racism is a different kind of visceral hatred that lasts beyond a moment of weakness. Are there black racists? Of course and no doubt.

          Where I disagree with you is how you transferred your opinion of some blacks onto the entire black community. Surely you would disagree with a black person’s comment that the white community was racist towards black people.

          To be honest, these hangups and bad feelings about race prevent us from serving all of God’s people. I wish we could move past it.

          Denny posted about John Piper’s book Bloodlines a couple of months ago. It’s worth the read.

          • yankeegospelgirl March 3, 2012 at 1:15 pm #

            I think that at this point in time, we can’t pretend that there is a fair parallel to be drawn. I will not deny that you can find a few bona fide white racists. But right now, the vast majority of whites “on the street” are quite the opposite, to the point of pathetic guilt. And this is true of both sides of the political spectrum.

            To a large extent, it’s a matter of what our culture has engrained into each community. The white community has been shamed into guilt. By contrast, our culture has repeatedly cultivated a spirit of entitlement in the black community, sending them the message that THEY can essentially get away with being as bullying and racist as they want, because they have a right to be. As a result, they have become the aggressors. Meanwhile, they scorn opportunities for things like higher education and are even willing to drag down their own people out of a twisted sense of pride.

            Is this true of all black people? No. There are many good, decent, and even very godly black men and women who do not fall into this category. However, I was deeply disturbed by the Elephant Room situation and how Voddie Baucham was treated by his fellow black ministers. Those pastors were essentially stabbing their brother in the back because his theology was “too white.” And these men are educated, conservative, etc. Yet they too exhibit this attitude. That showed that even the Church is not exempt from it.

          • Dwight McKissic March 3, 2012 at 3:31 pm #

            yankeegospelgirl,

            “they scorn opportunities for things like higher education and are even willing to drag down their own people out of a twisted sense of pride.” Do you have any evidence to back up this statement?

            No Black ministers stabbed Voddie Baucham in the back because his theology was “too white.” They accused Baucham of stabbing Bishop T. D. Jakes in the back, without just grounds and reasoning; much like you’ve done here with your undocumented assertions.

          • yankeegospelgirl March 4, 2012 at 4:12 pm #

            I suggest you read the end of John Piper’s book for further details, including statements from black writers who are very aware of this problem. Bill Cosby has been known to say “What the h*** good is Brown v. Board if nobody wants it?”

          • yankeegospelgirl March 4, 2012 at 4:14 pm #

            Also, Baucham stabbed nobody in the back. He remained firm to his convictions and placed sound doctrine above all other considerations, including race. Would that others followed his example.

          • JStanton March 4, 2012 at 6:20 pm #

            YGG, I don’t see the connection between your thoughts and anything Piper wrote about in that book. I did reread the last 100 pages but I apologize if I missed to what you were referring.

          • yankeegospelgirl March 4, 2012 at 7:40 pm #

            It does get discussed—I wish I could give you an exact page number, but watch for a long passage that he quotes from Juan Williams that lays out the situation very frankly:

            “This horror show—a refusal to master standard English, lack of interest in formal schooling, the acceptance of a culture of failure—is passed on to children and grandchildren as a legacy of being authentically black, when really it is a legacy of failure. And the tide of failure keeps rising, drowning soul after soul. The tragedy is blamed on white people, racism, or even abandonment by the black middle class.”

            Here is a link to the page in Williams’ book:

            http://books.google.com/books?id=D2LjLL8YYXUC&pg=PA92&lpg=PA92&dq=williams+%22drowning+soul+after+soul%22&source=bl&ots=v21Hc2djXU&sig=8dDyA86WlhJ6_e2ocGW36zjK1NI&hl=en&sa=X&ei=K_1TT8vhOeTk0QHNxP3KDQ&ved=0CDwQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=williams%20%22drowning%20soul%20after%20soul%22&f=false

          • Dwight McKissic March 4, 2012 at 7:55 pm #

            yankeegospelgirl,

            The facts are that educational achievements among Blacks have exponentially increased since 1954. Facts simply are not on your side, notwithstanding any comment made by Piper or Cosby. Just as I figured, you could not support your comments with facts.

            You should retract your comment and apologize to readers of this blog for this gross misrepresentation of the facts, which potentially contribute to racism.

            What sound doctrine did Baucham place “over all other considerations, including race”? In the words of President Ronald Reagan, “There you go again.”

          • yankeegospelgirl March 4, 2012 at 8:02 pm #

            Link to Bill Cosby’s speech, which is also discussed in Piper’s book:

            http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/billcosbypoundcakespeech.htm

          • JStanton March 4, 2012 at 9:07 pm #

            Ok, I found the passage. It’s on page 61.

            I remember Cosby getting a lot of heat over that speech.

          • yankeegospelgirl March 4, 2012 at 9:14 pm #

            I had only ever heard bits and pieces of that speech, knew the basic gist of it, but believe it or not it was only tonight that I sat down and read it all the way through. I’m amazed—Cosby hit HARD. His language is strong, but every word of it is true.

            There was a situation in my own hometown some years ago where a black girl who was apparently very gifted at math was persecuted by her community until she dropped out of college. It was so evil. Yet it perfectly encapsulates what is happening.

        • Dwight McKissic March 4, 2012 at 8:10 pm #

          yankeegospelgirl,

          You have taken what may be true of a small segment of the Black community and indicted an entire race of people. What if In took the fact that Sandusky is White and most mass murderers in U. S. history have been White, to make some kind of sweeping broad generalization that “they are child molesters and mass murderers.” That’s what you have done here.

  2. Ty Henton March 2, 2012 at 10:05 am #

    This is a very good subject. I grew up Catholic, Married a Missionary Baptist,got saved in a Southern Baptist Church, Now a Youth Leader and a Young Adult/College Leader. I am also the product of a mixed marriage, of a Black Mother and an Irish Immigrant Father. Growing up I did have the image of the SBC to be a white baptist organization,but I found out I was so wrong. I think the problem is not so much the name,but maybe that we as Southern Baptist, should take pride of the negative and turn it into a positive. I’m proud to be called Southern Baptist.

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