March 8, 2012 Print Edition

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Task force: Keep legal SBC name, but adopt informal name, 'Great Commission Baptists'

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP) -- The task force appointed to study a possible name change of the Southern Baptist Convention is recommending the convention maintain its legal name but adopt an informal, non-legal name for those who want to use it: Great Commission Baptists.

The report Monday night ended weeks of speculation by Southern Baptists and fellow evangelicals as to what the task force would do. The convention was formed in 1845, and a name change was first proposed in 1903, although one was not adopted then, or since.

The task force was appointed by Southern Baptist Convention President Bryant Wright.

Florida Baptists express various views about task force report on SBC name change

JACKSONVILLE (FBW)—From the Panhandle to Central Florida, and from the North of the Peninsular state to the south, where the Miami Baptist Association just celebrated its 100th anniversary a few years ago—news of a secondary optional name for the Southern Baptist Convention was met Feb. 21 with mixed reviews.

A dozen Florida Baptists reacted to the compromise proposal of a special task force appointed to study a possible name change—all expressing enthusiastic support of task force members, if some uncertainty about the effectiveness of a proposal to retain the SBC’s legal name but adopt the descriptor: “Great Commission Baptists.”

Floridian Orman, former name change opponent, says proposal a ‘brilliant, Solomonic’ compromise

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP) – The Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee approved the “Great Commission Baptists” recommendation by the name change task force, and it did so with the vocal backing of a member from Florida who was a staunch opponent in September.

The task force’s recommendation passed the Executive Committee overwhelmingly Feb. 21, receiving only about six “no” votes out of about 80 members present. As part of the recommendation, the Southern Baptist Convention would maintain its legal name while adopting a non-legal descriptor, “Great Commission Baptists,” for those churches, entities and organizations that wish to use it. The label is purely voluntary.

Disappointed young pastor says SBC name change task force ‘waste of time & purpose’

WINTER GARDEN (FBW)-A name change for the Southern Baptist Convention could have been a rallying point for those serious about doing the Great Commission, Jason Dukes, pastor of WestPoint Church in Winter Garden, said after learning a task force which studied the feasibility of changing the 167-year-old Convention’s name recommended the legal name remain the same.

State rep urges pastors to support Bunkley’s work in Tallahassee

TALLAHASSEE (FBW) – One state representative has advice for Florida Baptist pastors regarding their public policy voice in Tallahassee – financially support Bill Bunkley now before risking the loss of religious liberty later in the absence of his work there.

“Don’t wait until they come to arrest you for preaching biblical truth,” Rep. Dennis Baxley, R-Ocala, said Feb. 28.

Aloma’s George accepts Stanley’s invite as assistant pastor of First Baptist Atlanta

WINTER PARK (FBW) –Central Florida pastor Anthony George announced to his congregation at Aloma Church Sunday, March 4 he has accepted the invitation of Charles Stanley at First Baptist Church in Atlanta to serve as that historic church’s assistant pastor.

Aloma’s director of communications told Florida Baptist Witness George described the past nine weeks as a period of intense prayer and searching. He eventually concluded God was calling him to the Atlanta megachurch where Stanley, who served two terms as president of the Southern Baptist Convention, has been pastor for 42 years.

‘Inspirational messages’ bill goes to governor; others in doubt

TALLAHASSEE (FBW) – As the Florida Legislature moves closer to its scheduled March 9 adjournment, Florida Baptist lobbyist Bill Bunkley is concerned two important bills are in danger of dying, even while another is now ready for Gov. Rick Scott’s signature.

TASK FORCE REPORT: Keep ‘value’ of SBC name & offer a ‘beneficial’ alternative

EDITOR'S NOTE: Jimmy Draper, chairman of the task force that studied the question of changing the name of the Southern Baptist Convention, presented the following report to the SBC Executive Committee during its Monday night (Feb. 20) meeting. The task force was named by SBC President Bryant Wright last September.

Editorial: Is the SBC name change report a debate-ending proposal?

Florida Baptist Darrell Orman was adamantly opposed to a name change of the Southern Baptist Convention. So opposed was Orman, pastor of First Baptist Church in Stuart and a member of the SBC Executive Committee, that he even considered skipping the February EC meeting at which he was to chair the subcommittee that would consider the matter.

Orman, however, is now among the biggest advocates of what he calls a “brilliant, Solomonic compromise” offering a new “descriptor”—but not new legal name—brought by a task force appointed by SBC President Bryant Wright to study the issue at his personal request.

Orphan’s Heart forges ahead on constructing Haiti orphanage

LAKELAND (FBCH)—Nearly 50 children from the Foundation Foyer des Enfants Demunies orphanage have been living in tents since the 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit Port-au-Prince, Haiti two years ago. The orphanage, located in an area outside of Port-au-Prince called Bon Repos, was completely destroyed by the earthquake. Ron Gunter, vice president of Orphan’s Heart said that fortunately no one was hurt when the earthquake hit.

ONE YEAR LATER: Southern Baptists minister to tsunami survivors

TOHOKU, Japan (BP)—When Nobuko Tanno closes her eyes, she sees tsunami waves rushing in and destroying her village along Japan’s northeastern coastline. She sees cars floating and houses coming off foundations. She hears the roar of the water and desperate cries for help.

Her normally stoic face contorts a little with the flood of memories and she quickly opens her eyes. Remembering that fateful day one year ago, March 11, 2011, is still hard. She fixes her gaze on the odd-shaped frame on the white wall in her refurbished home. It immediately brings a smile and a contented sigh escapes.

Heroic Panama City security chief subject of biography Salvaged Santa

PANAMA CITY (FBW)—December 14, 2010, was a defining day for Mike Jones, Bay District Schools chief of security. It was the day he had to shoot a man who was shooting at members of the Bay County School Board in Panama City.

During the widely publicized incident, Jones says it was God’s providence that protected school board members and him from bullets that hit briefcases, desks, notebooks and walls - but missed the people.

Point of View: Calvinism on election

As John Calvin himself recognized, election is a divisive issue. Calvin wrote, “The human mind, when it hears this doctrine [election and damnation], cannot restrain its petulance, but boils and rages as if aroused by the sound of a trumpet.” The followers of James Arminus [the Remonstrances] disagreed with the doctrine of election as set forth by the Dutch Reformed Church. In response to the Arminians, the Estates-General convened in 1618 a council at the city of Dort charged with the task of determining the orthodox adherence of the Arminians to the Calvinist confessions of faith. The council condemned the Arminians, resulting in the removal of 200 Arminian pastors, and issued the Canons of Dort. The Canons responded to the five point doctrinal summary of the Arminians.

Point of View: Coming Apart: The Growing Cultural Divide

Charles Murray, whose book Losing Ground redefined the debate about welfare and the underclass thirty years ago, has a new book, Coming Apart. The book is about the increasing cultural divide among white Americans.

Point of View: Dave Says

Dave Says is a column featuring the financial advice of nationally syndicated radio host Dave Ramsey, the Dave Says column is filled with timely, relevant questions and answers taken from actual calls on Ramsey's radio program, The Dave Ramsey Show.

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