• Abortion,  Christianity,  Culture,  Politics

    The End of Roe in the Bright Light of June

    On January 22, 1973, Roe v. Wade and its companion decision Doe v. Bolton effectively made abortion-on-demand a Constitutional right in the U.S. through all nine months of pregnancy. Since that time, the regime of Roe has presided over the legal killing of 63 million children. That is more than ten times the people killed in the Jewish holocaust. Roe formed the legal basis for what has become without question the greatest human rights crisis of our time—that a whole class of human beings have been excluded from the human community by our legal system. Today, all of that changed. The Supreme Court of the United States has spoken in…

  • Christianity,  Complementarianism,  Theology/Bible

    Non-Contradicton (not Subscription) Is the SBC’s Confessional Standard

    If anything became clear at last week’s meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention in Anaheim, it’s this. The SBC has a confessional dispute in front of it, and it is not at all clear where it is going to go. The debate is occasioned by the ordination of female pastors at Saddleback Church in California. When Albert Mohler rose to speak against such a practice last week, it was very clear that the floor of the convention was overwhelmingly behind him. So much so that the Credentials Committee withdrew its proposal concerning Saddleback church’s female pastors. Nevertheless, in spite of that show of solidarity on the floor of the SBC,…

  • Christianity,  Complementarianism,  Theology/Bible

    Is Rick Warren Right about Gift vs. Office?

    An unexpected thing happened this week at the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) when Rick Warren, pastor of Saddleback Church, rose to make a statement that began with, “It’s customary for a guy who’s about to be hung to let him say his dying words.” He said it tongue-in-cheek, but we all knew that he was actually referring to something very serious—that his church is currently under scrutiny from the SBC for ordaining three women as pastors just over a year ago. Just recently, Warren also announced that his successors at Saddleback would be a husband and wife team, both of whom will be pastors leading the…

  • Christianity,  Complementarianism,  Theology/Bible

    Will the SBC Now Accept Women as Pastors?

    Last year, Rick Warren’s Saddleback church announced that it had begun ordaining women as pastors. This caused quite a stir at the time because Saddleback is an SBC church, and the SBC’s statement of faith clearly disallows female pastors. Our statement of faith, the Baptist Faith & Message (BF&M), says that the church’s …scriptural officers are pastors and deacons. While both men and women are gifted for service in the church, the office of pastor is limited to men as qualified by Scripture. So it was not a surprise that a messenger at last year’s convention moved to have Saddleback disfellowshipped from the SBC. This morning, the SBC’s Credentials Committee…

  • Christianity,  Homosexuality,  Theology/Bible

    Pride Month and Ezekiel 16:49

    I’ve gotten quite a bit of pushback on a thread I posted on Twitter a couple days ago to resist the abominable observance of “Pride Month.” I was inspired to post the thread in part by Carl Trueman’s excellent column marking the first day of this month-long celebration of sin. (If you haven’t read Trueman’s piece yet, I highly recommend it.) My thread was simply a list of Bible texts dealing with sexual perversion and God’s grace to sinners. You can read the entire thread here, but the push-back I’ve read focuses on the text from Ezekiel 16: “Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom… they were haughty…

  • Christianity,  Complementarianism,  Theology/Bible

    How Do Pastors Enforce Their Word? They Don’t.

    Jonathan Leeman has a really helpful article dealing with the proper use of pastoral and husbandly authority. This is really insightful stuff, and I commend it to you. There’s a Satanic version of authority and a godly version of authority. There’s authority as intended in creation and exercised in redemption, and authority as exercised in the Fall. Godly authority authors life, like the root of the word itself. It builds up, equips, strengthens, serves. Satanic authority steals, takes, diminishes, destroys. Godly authority, as set down in Scripture and as I’ve witnessed it, is seldom an advantage to those who possess it. It involves leading and making decisions, to be sure.…

  • Abortion,  Christianity,  Theology/Bible

    Eyes Wide Open about Abolitionism

    Tom Ascol has written a long essay in which he makes the case for the Abolitionist resolution passed at the 2021 SBC and against pro-life dissensions from it. He also engages my last two posts on the subject, so I thought I would write a brief word of response here. Tom Ascol frames our differences in term of class struggle—the SBC “elites” versus the average man in the pew. He writes: It is the elite class that is woefully out of step with the rank-and-file believers who are working hard to see the scourge of abortion brought to an immediate end in our nation… Six times Ascol uses the language…

  • Abortion,  Christianity

    An Appeal to Southern Baptists To Support the Pro-life Cause

    I am writing this short essay as an appeal to Southern Baptists who care about the pro-life cause. Right now, there is an effort underway by what I believe to be a tiny minority in the SBC to reverse the SBC’s longstanding commitment to the pro-life cause. They call themselves “Abolitionists,” but they are not the only ones who support the abolition of abortion. All sides of this debate want to see abortion abolished. The Abolitionists, however, condemn and repudiate the pro-life movement’s efforts to restrict abortion in whatever measure possible. After the Roe decision in 1973, the pro-life movement eventually coalesced around an incrementalist strategy to abolish abortion. Pro-lifers…

  • Christianity,  Theology/Bible

    Carl Trueman at T4G Warning about Celebrity Pastors

    I have lots of thoughts about the final meeting of Together for the Gospel (T4G) last week. I may try to put some of them together at some point, but that is not the point of my post today. The final T4G has given me an occasion to think back to the most memorable moments from T4G over the years. I’ve already written about one of them. Another one that I have always remembered was from 2012, and it involved Carl Trueman. I will never forget it. In the lead-up to T4G that year, Trueman had published a series of warnings online about celebrity pastors (see here, here, here, here).…