Monday, April 30, 2012

Community Baptism II

We had our second Community Baptism yesterday. To say that it was a great day would be an understatement. We were privileged to baptize seven souls into God's kingdom.

One young man came to Christ last March and hasn't found a church home yet. He came from 60 miles away to get baptized.

Another young man is mentally challenged but he knew that he trusted in Jesus. Before we immersed him in the water, I suggested that he might want to hold his nose. He declined. After we brought him up from the water he said, "I should have held my nose."

One young lady said she was scared because she couldn't swim. I assured her we wouldn't let her go and she was courageous enough to follow Christ in obedience in baptism. She didn't let her fear keep her from being obedient.

An older lady said she was nervous. She came out of the baptismal water with a huge smile on her face. I told her that I could see Jesus in her face. She said she could feel Him in her. It was awesome.

This is what being a pastor is all about---helping people come to Christ in humble obedience. I love our Community Baptism days.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Out of Order!

Megachurch pastors are a funny breed. The ones with whom I am acquainted are really pleasant, godly guys but they all have the same flaw. Their flaw is in their church they always get their way any way they choose to get it.

This past year we saw the megachurch mentality in full view when SBC President, Bryant Wright, took it upon himself to appoint a committee to study a name change for the SBC. The only problem with that was President Wright did not and does not have the authority to appoint a committee which has not been approved by the messengers of an annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention.

Apparently President Wright either did not know about this little detail or he did not care. Megachurch pastors are so used to getting their own way, that Wright was probably operating out of megachurch mode by instinct.

Unfortunately, the SBC name change committee is not a valid committee approved by messengers of an annual meeting, therefore, any recommendation that this rogue committee may bring before the next annual meeting should be ruled "out of order." If we allow this unauthorized committee to bring a recommendation to the floor then we will be setting a dangerous precedent. Future presidents may think they have carte blanche to create any committees to study any issues they wish, whether the convention knows about or not.

One other point is that messengers should not allow President Wright or anyone else to present the committee to the messengers for their approval after the fact. This also would be a dangerous precedent.

Personally, I think the committee came to the right conclusion in not changing the SBC name, but the point I'm making in this post is one of principle, not of committee recommendations. The SBC Name committee has not been authorized by the messengers of the SBC, thus any recommendations should be ruled out of order.