Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Gospel Project: Calvinist Indoctrination?

The new curriculum which Lifeway is pushing hard for local churches to use is entitled, "The Gospel Project." The title sounds like something every church would want to study, however, there are problems with this curriculum. for Traditional baptist churches. Many authors associated with this project are ardent Calvinists.

One SBC pastor examined the Gospel Project curriculum and decided that it wasn't for his church.

We found it to be biased in how it explains and interprets the study themes. There are numerous subtle seeds of the Calvinistic approach to Scripture and many that are overtly obvious. The more we read and studied the curriculum, the more convinced we have become convinced that this curriculum is not suitable for use here at Calvary. I am greatly disappointed because there is nothing wrong with healthy dialogue and wrestling with theological issues. But when a curriculum is designed to teach only one side of the issue, it is no longer a healthy debate but indoctrination; and we cannot allow that indoctrination to take place here at Calvary.

I understand that Lifeway is a stand-alone entity of the Southern Baptist Convention. They do not
receive any Cooperative Program funding and so they are left to support the entity without direct
SBC support. I also understand that Calvinists buy a lot of books. Perhaps, Lifeway is trying to
tap the Calvinist market to increase revenue. Although I don't agree with that approach, it is not
up to me to determine their business case. However, as a Pastor of a local church, I can decide
what curriculum to use.

If your church wishes to use Calvinist material such as the Gospel Project, then by all means, do so. However, unsuspecting churches who have trusted that Lifeway would produce literature which agrees with their own theology, need to take a look at this material before purchasing it. If you have already purchased this material and you disagree with, you can do as Pastor Green did and return it to Lifeway.

For more details on this topic, I refer you to a couple of blogs:

SBC Issues

Rev. Green's Website

SBC Today